The Class of ’22 has so many moving parts for Syracuse, it’s hard to keep it all sorted. But safe to say SU has plenty of hooks in the water of what could be one of the best recruiting classes ever. Two of those hooks happen to be with a pair of AAU teammates and pals, Maliq Brown and Justin Taylor.
Brown is a 4-star power forward while Taylor is a 4-star small forward. Both are very high on Syracuse’s short list, and either one would be a good win for the program. But how about both in a package deal? It’s in play, so says Brown’s head coach Cade Lemcke. He spoke to Mike McCallister and said that both could benefit from one another at the next level.
“They don’t have to play together by any stretch of the imaginations. But I think if one of them decides on a school, I think that would be helpful for the other one. They played together on the AAU side back when they were ninth graders, and they really enjoyed playing together.” – Cade Lemcke, Blue Ridge head coach
It is absolutely huge that Brown’s own head coach is openly discussing the pair of them listening to each other’s decision. A pair of 4-star players will have plenty of individual options, but it’s been quite clear Brown is seriously considering the Orange. In fact Lemcke said Brown was “very excited” to get the offer.
Lemcke discussed how close the two players are, and how they actually fit each other’s style really well. “Justin loves playing with him because Justin wants to fill it up and get shots. He knows that Maliq is very willing to set screens, to make the extra pass and it allows shot takers and shot makers to really be successful.”
“I don’t think they’re going to make a decision together, but I could see if one of them makes a decision before the other one, that school could be helped by that player in terms of convincing the other one to come on board as well.” – Cade Lemcke
Yeah, this is a huge development. Brown’s high school coach is again laying out the possibility of the package deal. Is there enough room for both of them at SU? Of course. With players as talented as these two, you find a way to make it work. Obviously 5-star talents like Brandon Huntley-Hatfield and Zion Cruz would take a certain priority, but it’s a pipe dream to think SU would land all four. It would work itself out organically. The big takeaway is that Brown’s coach is laying the crumbs out for the two as a duo at the next level. Who knows if it happens, but it’s a lot less speculative if Lemcke is discussing it.