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McCullough Could Be Latest ‘One-and-done’ for Orange

ESPN’s Chad Ford sees McCullough as an intriguing prospect.

The most recent ‘one and done’ for Syracuse is Tyler Ennis, but freshman forward Chris McCullough might be right behind him.

 

Although Ennis has spent time in the NBA D-League for Phoenix, the 18th overall pick in June’s draft will get the chance to make an impact when the time is right.

 

 

Ford’s big board lists McCullough as the 11th overall prospect. There is still more he can do to improve his positioning and help Syracuse win.

 

He needs to get big. He has a ton of potential now and he has been compared to a taller C.J. Fair, but McCullough lacks the mass and the physical toughness that, say, Rakeem Christmas demonstrates. McCullough is more of a mid-range shooter who can drive to the basket. If he can put more weight on, he can be more of a threat down low and on defense.

 

The season is still young. Most of the NBA talent will come from major conference teams, like the ACC. Once ACC play starts, there will be a more accurate reading of what he can do and how he matches up against the competition. It will be fun to see how he compares to someone like Amile Jefferson or Jahlil Okafor for Duke, and Montrezl Harrell for Louisville. Harrell has the mass, but is a few inches shorter than McCullough. These are some big tests for him, but they will come when the games mean more.
If, in fact, he does go to the NBA after this year, how effective will he be? It would depend on the team. Ennis isn’t getting much playing time for the Suns because Eric Bledsoe and Goran Dragic are ahead of him. If McCullough goes to a team in immediate need for someone at his position, he will get the early exposure. He would benefit from a team that can help him develop into a bigger, more physical player.

 

ACC play begins Jan. 3 against Virginia Tech in Blacksburg. That is when McCullough’s real future test begins.

 

Posted: Austin Pollack
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