Syracuse men’s basketball is just about to rev up its recruiting efforts this summer. With AAU ball and commitment season approaching, SU is on the home stretch of assembling its Class of 2023. If this summer is anything like the last, Jim Boeheim and company will go a long way in a short time to reverse their fortunes following last year’s disappointing 16-17 record.
At the time of this writing, Syracuse has yet to net a Class of ‘23 commit, but that’s the nature of the game. Expect more buzz and news as the summer goes along as high-profile players pursued by the Orange like Aden Holloway, Isaiah Miranda, and DJ Wagner make their collegiate choices.
Speaking of those names, it appears that SU’s recruiting focus is shifting from some previous targets to others. We wrote about the aforementioned Holloway some time ago on the Fizz, but it now appears that Boeheim and his staff are out of luck – Holloway has reportedly narrowed his final four choices to Tennessee, Auburn, Miami, and Wake Forest. ‘Cuse offered Holloway all the way back in 2019 and hung around in his commitment cycle for some time, but it looks like he’s headed elsewhere.
In his stead, Syracuse basketball now turns to two skilled shooters in the Class of ‘23: Reid Ducharme and Elmarko Jackson.
Ducharme, a 4-star 6’4” shooting guard/small forward out of Brewster Academy (NH), is regarded as one of the premier shooters in the class. Gerry McNamara has been credited with being heavily invested in the recruitment of Ducharme, who also possesses offers from Stanford, Providence, and Iowa. He received a Syracuse offer last August, and the Orange have hung around in his recruiting cycle long enough that Ducharme plans to visit in mid-June.
“It came down from coach Boeheim and it was after we had finished talking…I was really excited when I heard [him] say that because Syracuse is definitely a school I could see myself playing for. For it to come from a legendary coach like Boeheim was really cool.” (Reid Ducharme to SI.com’s Mike McAllister, 5/23/22)
With some positional versatility thanks to his size and top-tier shooting ability, Ducharme is certainly an interesting candidate for the Orange to pursue.
The other player to receive increased focus in recent days is 4-star combo guard Elmarko Jackson. Jackson stands at 6’3” and hails from Richland, NJ. An interesting thing to note about Jackson is that as of 247Sports’ newest Class of ‘23 rankings, Jackson now cracks the Top 75 nationally, sneaking in at No. 73, and received a scholarship offer from SU in mid-April. The Orange will have to fight off a slew of other suitors for Jackson, who raised his stock based on a few recent impressive performances in events such as the KYDA Invitational in Scranton, PA.
As Boeheim and company begin to ponder life after Joe Girard and Jesse Edwards, focusing in on signable, talented prospects must be a focus. After several years of underwhelming crops prior to 2022, don’t think of getting talent as a given – SU can and should do their best to secure talents like Ducharme and Jackson, but it won’t be easy. It’s certainly worth keeping your eyes peeled this summer for more about those two names and the rest of SU’s Class of ‘23.