Live basketball is back! No, it’s not some crappy game of H.O.R.S.E. that looks like it was filmed on a flip phone. It is The Basketball Tournament, where Boeheim’s Army is vying for $1 million.
Going into the tournament, the Syracuse University alumni team looked like it had its best roster yet. Some new additions and a handful of veterans earned Boeheim’s Army a three-seed, but last week two players dropped out of the tournament. Tyler Lydon announced he would not play due to a recent injury and Chris McCullough is out for personal reasons. Both guys were slated to play a forward/center position for the team and their absences left a big gap in the middle of the zone. But Boeheim’s Army has found a replacement.
Boeheim’s Army added Will Rayman to the roster a few days ago. Rayman didn’t attend SU and is the odd-man-out in that respect, but he still has plenty of talent. The 6-foot-9 forward played at Colgate for four years and plastered his name in the school record books. Here’s the list for all the records he holds, per Colgate Athletics:
- Freshman Season 3FG Made – 65
- Freshman Single Game Scoring – 34 points
- Best Single Game 3FG Percentage (min. 4 made) – 100%
- Games Played – 134
- Career Starts – 128
- Minutes Played – 4,272
Rayman also is ranked second in career points, third in career rebounds, and third in career three-point field goal percentage. If that isn’t convincing enough, he was named the Patriot League Defensive Player of the Year and was on the All-Patriot League First Team last season. Plus, Rayman was conference rookie of the year after his freshman season, made the conference second team twice, and earned conference all-defensive team honors two times.
Rayman is a big that can protect the paint on defense and also step out to knock down three’s on offense. He’s a terrific shooter and will help Boeheim’s Army with spreading the floor and possibly playing five-out.
Plus, Rayman is a great rebounder and is extremely physical. In just the first couple practices the team has had, he has already got the attention of his teammates.
“He’s a monster on the boards,” Eric Devendorf said. “He’s a guy that is kind of in the same mold as Tyler [Lydon], but I think he might have a little more dog in him. He’s a guy who’s really going after it. He doesn’t have any fear in his game. I was impressed.”
It is difficult to replace Lydon and McCullough, but Rayman is a great choice to try and do so. Demetris Nichols said that Boeheim’s Army’s top priority this year is rebounding and Rayman will be a big part of that. Playing in the zone will be different, but if he can learn it quickly, he could be a great addition to the roster and a spark off the bench.
Boeheim’s Army plays its first game this Tuesday at 4 PM EST against Men of Mackey, Purdue’s alumni team. You can watch the game on ESPN and follow along with our commentary on the Orange Fizz Twitter page (@OrangeFizz).