Orange Fizz


Syracuse Continues To Flip-Flop Centers

Former Colorado center Eddie Lampkin Jr. transferred to Syracuse on Tuesday. The 6-foot-11, 265 pound big man is a huge acquisition for SU, and the reason isn’t centered around statistics.

Lampkin averaged 10.6 points and seven rebounds last season. That includes a March Madness three-game run with CU that spanned from the first four to the second round.

Moreover, Lampkin brings more than just solid numbers, and that’s experience. Something that SU lacks given they haven’t played in consecutive NCAA tournaments since 2018 and 2019.

Why is finding a starting center so important for the Orange this offseason?

The center position has been in shambles since the departure of Jesse Edwards. Syracuse has had its fair share of attempts at committing to a solid center who can be valuable for the entire season.

Edwards averaged 12 points and 14.5 points in his third and fourth years in Orange, respectively. He brought consistency and reliability to a team that was searching for answers in former head coach Jim Boeheim’s last two seasons.

Edwards transferred to West Virginia, and that sent Syracuse into a panic. The Orange eventually picked up 7-foot-4 center Naheem McLeod from Florida State. McLeod posted just 4.5 points and 3.8 points in his first two seasons with the Seminoles.

Some SU fans were excited about the move because they thought he could play more minutes with the Orange, while others thought he wasn’t athletic enough for his tall frame to manage opposing ACC centers.

Conclusively, this situation didn’t fully pan out because McLeod ended up getting injured in early January. Forward Maliq Brown shifted into the center spot and faced some of ACC’s best big men. This wasn’t the ideal scenario for the Orange after they lost Edwards.

Brown held his ground and emerged in his role as the season went on, but this isn’t a situation that Syracuse wanted to mess around with for another year.

Brown entered the transfer portal earlier this week, and SU went back to phase one. Thankfully for Orange fans, Syracuse found Lampkin early in the offseason.

Due to Lampkin’s early commitment, SU can build their team around him. There are no question marks about who Syracuse’s center will be, and this will pave the way for head coach Adrian Autry as the offseason progresses.

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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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