Syracuse landed a big time commitment yesterday when 6-foot-10 center Frank Anselem committed to the Orange. Anselem had previously been a 2021 recruit, but reclassified to 2020. Originally, Kentucky was interested but after landing Olivier Sarr, Anselem’s recruitment was wide open.
247 Sports lists Anselem as a 4-star recruit and the No. 142 player in the class. Anselem was previously listed in the top 100 of 2021 recruits before reclassifying. The other schools that were Anselem’s finalists were San Diego State, Georgia and New Mexico.
At 220 pounds, Anselem needs to get bigger, but he’s already much heavier than guys like Marek Dolezaj and Jesse Edwards were as recruits. And now, for the first time in years, Syracuse has depth at center. Bourama Sidibe returns for his senior year, and is backed up by Edwards and redshirt freshman Jon Bol Ajak. Unlike Sidibe and Dolezaj, Anselem has wide shoulders which will allow him more opportunity to fill out.
According to 247 Sports National Recruiting Analyst Josh Gershon, Anselem is inconsistent with high upside. Right now he, “has budding elbow jumper and hook shot but footwork and post moves can improve. Has chance to be high level rebounder and rim protector given size, length and athleticism.”
Sidibe has turned into a solid rim protector but has struggled on offense. Edwards is pretty much the opposite – with solid range but terrible defensive play. Anselem seems to be somewhere in between. The most intriguing physical tool about Anselem is his 7-foot-5 wingspan, which could be a menace to any opponent entering the lane. According to 247 Sports, Anselem could add 20 pounds, and already likes to play physically down low.
That’s welcome news to a program that has grown used to big man being dismantled by opponents. With a year to mature and learn behind Sidibe, Anselem could emerge in his second season. Of course, Bol Ajak and Edwards will also be vying for the open center position.
As for this coming season, Anselem could give SU a solid defensive option off the bench if Sidibe is in foul trouble. While he’s raw, he has a very high ceiling.
Along with Kadary Richmond and Woody Newton, SU has three solid recruits at all three levels.