The class of 2022 continues to pump out immense talent as well as a diverse choices of programs. So far, Duke and North Carolina are without top 60 (according to ESPN) commits, while Michigan State and UCLA have claimed two of the top three players.
This opens the door for a school like Syracuse, which is less known for its upper echelon talent and more known for its local products. A player that fits that exact mold is outside ESPN’s top 60 and from the northeast. It’s point guard Quadir Copeland.
The 6-foot-6 guard is originally from Pennsylvania, but played his junior year at Life Center Academy in Burlington, New Jersey. But as of recently, he’s transferred to IMG academy, a school that produced center Jesse Edwards and 2021 forward Benny Williams.
What does this have to do for his chances to land in Central New York? Nothing. It just enhances Copeland’s competition in his senior year after dropping 17 points per game last season.
The long, athletic guard has a chance to backup future senior Joe Girard, depending on his choice to continue his college basketball career, and Symir Torrence, who will also be in his final year, barring a 5th year return. This allows Copeland to learn from the veterans and take the keys to the ‘Cuse Cadillac come his sophomore year.
Copeland’s ability is developmental, but has the chance of becoming elite, and it’ll garner more recognition when he plays on the biggest stages at IMG.
VERY EARLY SCOUTING REPORT:
- Aggressive in transition, pushes the pace when he has the ball on the fast break
- His speed will set him apart from other guards
- He can shoot with a hand in his face and off the dribble
- Smooth to the rim, doesn’t settle (but takes the best shot the defense offers)
- Great vision off the dribble
- Isn’t tentative in the paint, will take the ball strong to the cup
- Not afraid of being the focal point on his team, taking control when down (losing)
The Orange are recruiting Copeland hard and his tenacity is a big reason why. Both Jim Boeheim and Gerry McNamara have developed relationships with the Pennsylvania native. Copeland told Sports Illustrated how G-Mac “always helps him with his game.” The 6-foot-6 guard also reiterated how both coaches have treated him as a human being, developing a bond beyond basketball.
But Copeland’s destination is far from final. His recruitment around the college basketball landscape has heightened in last year and a half. Syracuse is joined by Oregon, Maryland, Miami, Villanova and a few others. There has yet to be indication of where Copeland is leaning, but his focus has swayed away from picking a school, and more on developing himself as a player.