While the specter of the NCAA investigation/punishments still hang over the Hill, Syracuse announces its recruiting haul. The basketball program keeps reeling in major talent, and this class comes with some of the highest expectations in the program’s storied history. Moustapha Diagne, Franklin Howard, Tyler Lydon, and Malachi Richardson all officially sign their letters of intent, and will be on campus next season.
There are no more rebuilding years for the Orange, just reloading. This year SU is a team ranked #23 for now, but a few early season wins and expect Syracuse to start getting even more national attention. One of the reasons is the annual success, and high-end talent SU continues to acquire. This upcoming Syracuse recruiting class is ranked fourth by ESPN.com and eighth by Scout.com. Jim Boeheim has already touted it as possibly the greatest class in program history.
Here’s the facts: Richardson is the most hyped of all the prospects. By now most SU fans have watched his videos on YouTube and been following his accolades. He’s 6-6, 190 lb. forward from Trenton. He’s got a great scoring touch, a slithery smooth drive to the basket, and is a top 5 prospect at his position in the country. He’s rated 19th overall in his class and and the 3rd best small forward by ESPN.com. He is the 7th small forward on Scout.com’s list. He has the potential to be a star.
Diagne is a 6-8, 230 lb. Jersey product. He’s native of Senegal, and averaged 17.1 points and 9.2 rebounds a game last season for Pope John XXIII. He’s ranked 48th overall and the 9th best center by ESPN.com. Scout.com ranks him as the 12th best power forward. The Orange need size down low, and Diagne has the potential to provide that.
Howard is a 6-6, 170 lb. guard who missed last year with a knee injury. He is ranked 74th overall and the 20th best shooting guard by ESPN.com. Scout.com rates him the 22nd shooting guard. He can add depth to the guard rotation, and possibly be the consistent sharpshooter the Orange have continually hoped Trevor Cooney would be.
Lydon is another big. He’s 6-9, 181 lbs., a power forward from New Hampshire. He was one of 24 players invited to the 2014 USA Basketball’s Men’s U-18 training camp this summer and made the roster. He is rated as 49th overall and 10th among power forwards by ESPN.com. Scout.com ranked him the 13th power forward. More power and scoring ability around the basket for SU.
The Orange just continue to do what they do, make a splash in the recruiting battle ground. This class might be the best of all.