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Things Aren’t Looking Good For SU In The JP Estrella Sweepstakes

Credit Brandon Jenkins/247Sports

Compared to last year, it’s been all quiet on the Syracuse basketball recruiting front so far. The Orange snagged summertime commits from top prospects like Justin Taylor and Quadir Copeland, but have yet to secure even one commitment in the Class of ‘23, highly rated or otherwise. There’s some speculation on why that’s been the case for SU, but there’s no concrete explanation as to why that’s the case.

No matter the reason, any Class of ‘23 recruit Syracuse nets may play even less than new classes in the recent past. First-year players like Kadary Richmond and Benny Williams were the key pieces of smaller, less-touted classes. This year, the Class of ‘22 looks to be primed to play regularly and produce multiple starters in Year 1 on The Hill.

However, that hasn’t stopped the Orange from trying for Class of ‘23 center JP Estrella.

Around last month, Estrella – a 6’11”, 4-star center out of Brewster Academy in New Hampshire – was reported to be in frequent contact with Syracuse. Estrella quickly went from unranked on 247Sports to the No. 8 composite center in the country in the class, and may visit SU soon if he doesn’t first commit to Duke. The Blue Devils offered Estrella on June 7th and appear to be (if you trust 247Sports’ Crystal Ball projections) the current favorite to land him. 

Syracuse doesn’t desperately need Estrella with Jesse Edwards’ remaining eligibility and 2022 developmental commit Peter Carey waiting in the wings, but Estrella appears to be one the last remaining serious ‘Cuse targets that hasn’t already committed somewhere else. The Orange have already lost out on other top recruits like GG Jackson, Blue Cain, and have fallen deeply behind on others.

Additionally, Syracuse doesn’t want to let Duke come in at the last minute to pick its pockets again. Coach K and company did just that last year with the courting of center Kyle Filipowski. SU can’t start habitually losing players to Duke, and that means staying the course despite the “analyst buzz” surrounding his pending commitment.

A 4-star would be a big first get in the Class of ‘23. If Estrella likes what he sees and is content to play sparingly in his first year, the Orange should go full steam ahead in seeking out his talents. If they can’t swing it, there’s a very good chance they’ll be seeing him donning royal blue in Cameron Indoor sometime soon.

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The Fizz is owned, edited and operated by Damon Amendolara. D.A. is an ’01 Syracuse graduate from the Newhouse School with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.

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