6’5 190 LB, Shooting Guard
ESPN: #15 recruit Class of 2015
Committed to Syracuse on 12/13/13
Also considered: Arizona, UCONN, Indiana, Rutgers, Villanova
Malachi Richardson is one of, if not the best Shooting Guard in the entire country. While he is still pretty athletic, I wouldn’t consider Mali to be a ridiculous athlete. Mali has great size (6’5) and length (7’0 wingspan); thus making him a perfect fit for the top of the Syracuse 2-3 zone. Malachi will also bring a terrific offensive skillset to the Orange; he’s very good at getting to the rim and is an excellent shooter. As many Syracuse fans know, shooting was a major problem for last years’ team; thus Malachi is a huge addition to the 2015 class. As soon as Mali steps onto campus he will be ready to play and will be one of the top options in the offense. There’s really not that much to say about Mali, except he is a stud and is going to win a lot of games for the Orange. Syracuse always puts together great recruiting classes; however Malachi Richardson may be their best recruit since Carmelo Anthony.
6’9 185 LB, Power Forward
ESPN: #59 recruit Class of 2015
Committed to Syracuse on 10/17/13
Also Considered: Boston College, Notre Dame, Maryland, Virginia, Kansas
Tyler Lydon was the first commit of Syracuse’s 2015 recruiting class; but at the time of his commitment a lot of people including myself really had no idea who he was. Two seasons ago Tyler played High School ball in his hometown, Pine Plains, New York. He absolutely blew up in the summer, which inclined Syracuse to offer him. Luckily for Syracuse, Lydon committed somewhat early. In a recent interview I had with Tyler he cited SU’s proximity to home, his relationship with Coach Hop, SU’s style of play and the opportunity to get a great education as his reasons for committing so early. This past year he reclassified to the Class of 2015 and continued his high school career at the New Hampton School. From what I have seen of Tyler, he is super athletic and a very good shooter; however if he wants to play PF he will definitely need to bulk up. Right now I would say Lydon is a little bit of a raw prospect, but this won’t matter because as most SU Freshman, he won’t get very much playing time his first year on campus. I eventually see Tyler being a tremendous asset to Syracuse. Tyler’s length and athleticism are perfect for the zone and at the offensive end; he is a very good scorer. Lydon also told me that he is very good at running the open floor, which will obviously be good for a Syracuse team that is at their best when playing in transition. From my conversation with Tyler I could immediately tell that he is a very good person and a very hard worker; Syracuse fans are going to love him. I would also like to add that Tyler is one of the most underrated players in the country. Tyler is ranked 59th in his class; however he is one of 24 players from the Class of 2014 and Class of 2015 to tryout for the USA 18U team.
6’6 190 LB, Point Guard
ESPN: #70 recruit Class of 2015
Committed to Syracuse on 4/14/14
Also Considered: Georgetown, Maryland, NC State, Ohio State, Virginia
I’m going to start this off by saying Franklin’s ranking is very deceiving and will unfortunately continue to be. This past season Franklin didn’t play at all because of a Torn ACL; thus his ranking suffered. Next year he will be transitioning to the PG position, so if he is being compared to guys who have played the PG position their entire career that may have a negative effect on his ranking. Fortunately for Syracuse, High School rankings obviously don’t determine how good a player will be. There obviously is not a lot of recent tape of Howard, because he just returned from injury; however I have heard a lot about him. Franklin is pretty athletic and obviously a big guard; having him and Mali team up at the top of the zone will be lethal. Franklin is also a pretty good shooter and passer; however he tells me that before getting to Syracuse, he needs to work on his handle. Franklin also told me that one of the main reasons he committed to Syracuse was because of their excellent guard development. When he gets up to Syracuse, I think Franklin will be given what I like to call the “MCW Treatment”. Just as Michael Carter-Williams sat and learned behind former Syracuse PG, Scoop Jardine for a year, the plan is for Howard to do the same under current Syracuse PG, Kaleb Joseph. Saying Franklin will be the next MCW would be a very bold statement; however he certainly has the size and skillset to become a very similar and productive player.
6’9 240 LB, Power Forward
ESPN: #44 recruit Class of 2015
Committed to Syracuse on 5/31/14
Also Considered: Memphis
With Rakeem Christmas graduating; Chris McCullough, (if he stays) DaJuan Coleman and Chinonso Obokoh are the only true big men on Syracuse’s roster; thus it was essential for Syracuse to add a big man in this class. Moustapha Diagne is seemingly a perfect fit for Syracuse. Moustapha is a long, athletic forward who is great at running the open floor. Defensively, he is a typical Syracuse shot-blocking big, but unlike a lot of players on last years Syracuse team he is a very good rebounder. Offensively he has very good instincts; thus he is a very good offensive rebounder and is exceptional at getting put-backs. Diagne also has a very solid mid-range game. In my opinion, Diagne is already a very good player; however I think his potential is sky high. You can’t teach height, length and athleticism; thus when Diagne combines all these with the exceptional big-man coaching he will get from Coach Hop at SU, the sky will be the limit. As of right now Tapha is the final player of Syracuse’s top-rated 4 men recruiting class; their best class since the 2009 class which consisted of Fab Melo, Dion Waiters, CJ Fair and Baye Moussa Keita.
6’10 220 LB, Power Forward
ESPN: #10 recruit Class of 2015
Considering: Syracuse, Florida, Ohio State, North Carolina, Kansas, Kentucky, West Virginia
When it comes to Thomas Bryant, Syracuse is in a very tricky spot. Hailing from Rochester, New York, Bryant is already a fan favorite, not to mention he is a stud. I’ve seen Bryant play live once; he is a polished low-post scorer, great rebounder and solid defender. Bryant would also bring much needed toughness to a Syracuse team that was very soft last year and that will probably be soft this year. Syracuse is also looking for another big man to add to a very inexperienced group. It sounds like Bryant and Syracuse are a match made in heaven; however, there is one major problem, Syracuse doesn’t have any scholarships remaining. From what I have heard from Bryant’s high school coach, Rob Fulford; Bryant is not even close to a decision and will probably wait until the spring signing period to make a decision; this may be very good for Syracuse. In order for Syracuse to have a chance at landing Bryant somebody will need to leave. Its obviously very early; however I think there is a very good chance that incoming Freshman PF, Chris McCullough goes pro after this season; thus opening a spot for Bryant. This basically puts Syracuse in a win-win situation; ensuring a loaded team for the 2015-2016 season. If Syracuse is able to bring Thomas Bryant aboard they will most likely secure the top class in the country.
6’6 180 LB, Small Forward
ESPN: #27 recruit Class of 2015
Considering: Syracuse, UCONN, Kentucky, Kansas, Indiana
Derrick Jones is the type of player that Syracuse fans would absolutely love; he is a freakish athlete that can flat out score. Experts even consider Syracuse to be Jones’ top choice; however I think there is only a 5% chance that Jones ends up in Orange. Like I said before Syracuse has no scholarships left; however I think Jones will also be a spring decision. This means Syracuse will know if they have another scholarship available by the time Jones makes a decision. If a scholarship opens up and Syracuse has a choice between Jones and Bryant, they will pick Bryant because he fills a need. While Jones is a great player, he is pretty much the same type of player as Tyler Lydon; thus he doesn’t really fill a need at all. I still give Syracuse a 5% chance of landing Jones because he is a great player and if Bryant picks another school, it obviously wouldn’t hurt to add another player of Jones’ caliber. At the beginning of his recruiting, everybody deemed Syracuse and Kentucky as the favorites to land Jones; however it seems very unlikely that he ends up at either school. It will be interesting to see how Jones’ recruiting pans out, but I believe he ends up at UCONN or he reclassifies to the class of 2016.
6’9 210 LB, Power Forward
247 Sports: #97 recruit Class of 2015
Considering: Syracuse, Seton Hall, Villanova, Georgetown, SMU
Chris Silva is yet another long, athletic forward that would be a pretty good fit for the zone. Compared to Bryant and Diagne, I think Silva is definitely more of a project and four year player. I knew Syracuse had interest in Silva, but until I spoke to Silva myself, I really had no idea how serious they were about him. Chris told me that along with Seton Hall and Nova, Syracuse is one of the three schools recruiting him the hardest. While Silva may not be a 5 star recruit like Derrick Jones, Syracuse may prefer him instead of Jones because he fills a need. If Syracuse misses out on Bryant, Silva would be a pretty solid fallback option; however I do not believe Silva waits into the spring signing period to make a decision. Silva not waiting until spring would basically eliminate any chance he ends up in Orange. I think Silva ultimately ends up at Seton Hall with current high school teammate and former Syracuse target, PG Isaiah Briscoe.