It hasn’t been much of a mystery that the top priority on the Syracuse basketball coaching staff’s board is Quade Green. The point guard from Philadelphia exploded onto the scene early this year, after flying a bit under the radar as a junior. Now, he’s one of the hottest point guard prospects in America. And Syracuse desperately needs to land him.
Point guard recruits are starting to fly off the board, with one such player – Isaiah Washington – picking Minnesota yesterday. Washington is important here because, while he did not yet hold an offer from the Orange, he was viewed as a top backup option should Syracuse miss on Green. But tired of waiting for an offer from his self-professed dream school, he jumped at the chance to play for the Gophers.
Another backup point guard option, Jose Alvarado, recently cut his list to three schools: Rutgers, Seton Hall, and Georgia Tech. The feeling is that Rutgers is the likeliest destination for the NYC product. Like Washington, Alvarado did not hold an offer from Syracuse, and it’s hard to gauge exactly where he stood in the pecking order. But as his decision is likely coming sooner than later, that’s another point guard off the board.
So at this point, that basically leaves the Orange with two options for lead guard. One is Green; the other is Matt Coleman. As it stands, Syracuse is presumed to be on the outside looking in with Coleman, though that’s in part by choice. Again, Green is the clearcut top choice for Jim Boeheim and Mike Hopkins, so Coleman hasn’t gotten the same attention as Quade. Meanwhile, Coleman has been prioritized by Texas and Shaka Smart, and recently announced a top five that includes the Longhorns, Duke, Kansas, and Stanford, in addition to the Orange.
It’s been reported by various outlets that Coleman does plan on taking an official visit to Syracuse in October, though it’s conceivable that this whole point guard recruiting drama could be finished before then. Green – who has visited the Syracuse campus numerous times – is thought to be a Syracuse lean right now. Duke and Kentucky are the two biggest challengers for his services.
However, it’s telling that despite Duke being considered the team to beat for the last part of the summer, the Blue Devils suddenly offered Coleman. That would seemingly indicate that they’re not nearly as confident about the prospect of landing Green as some might have suspected. Kentucky, meanwhile, likes Green but does not have him at the top of their point guard board. That spot belongs to Trae Young, a 5-star recruit from Oklahoma who, at this point, seems likely to select either the Wildcats or, potentially, Washington – where his good friend and superstar recruit Michael Porter has committed (Porter’s dad is on the Washington coaching staff).
There’s a very serious domino effect going on in the world of basketball recruiting, particularly as it pertains to the point guard slot. People have been waiting for Syracuse’s 2017 recruiting to take off, but at this point it all depends on getting that first domino to fall. Quade Green could very well be that domino, though his commitment could be set off by a number of other factors.
If Young picks Kentucky, that eliminates the Wildcats from contention. If Coleman selects Duke, that knocks out the other biggest threat for Green. And perhaps most importantly, if Green finally commits to the Orange after much, much, much flirtation, that could set off a chain of events that leads to Syracuse landing a phenomenal recruiting class. The buzz is that Green is the key, as his reputation from EYBL ball in particular has spread like wildfire, and top recruits want to play with him.
You land Quade Green, it only increases the odds of locking in guys like Brandon Randolph and Nick Richards.
So we continue to wait for things to unfold in this year’s point guard recruiting, hoping more and more that Quade Green decides to wear orange. He’s been the most important recruit on the board for awhile. His importance is only amplified as more point guards start choosing their schools.