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Does Syracuse Need a True Point Guard?

As college basketball continues to evolve, one thing that has become a big topic of conversation is the importance of having a true point guard on the floor. Syracuse hasn’t had one in a while. From Judah Mintz this past year to Joe Girard, the Orange have had combo guards and shooting guards running the offense. It begs the question, do the ‘Cuse need to go after a true point guard to lead the team or can they go another season without one?

In the national title game this year, UCONN and Purdue are two teams that still run their offense through traditional point guards. Tristen Newton and Braden Smith both averaged more than six assists per game. One big piece in both of those teams is their reliance on centers that aren’t the most mobile, Zach Edey and Donovan Clingan.

While SU’s new center Eddie Lampkin may not be at that level, he does in some ways fit the build. In addition, the other starting guard on next years team, JJ Starling, doesn’t have the ability to create for his teammates that you need if you don’t have a true point guard. Chris Bell is best as a spot-up shooter who plays off-ball. Donnie Freeman can handle the ball at times but of course, a 6’10 freshman can’t be your primary ball-handler no matter how good he is.

The offense this past season had so many issues in half-court offensive sets. The Orange played at one of the fastest paces of any team in the country and had to because when they were slowed down, everything fell apart. For Starling, Bell, Lampkin, and the rest of the team to be as successful as possible, SU needs a true point guard who can facilitate the offense and create in half-court sets.

Adrian Autry fit the mold of a true PG when he played for the Orange. Can the second-year head coach find his guy in the portal to run his team?

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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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