My 2023-34 SU Basketball Preview - Part 3 | Syracusefan.com

My 2023-34 SU Basketball Preview - Part 3

SWC75

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Centers

Peter Carey, sophomore 6-11 205

Carey, who I’ve also seen listed as 7-1, hasn’t played much competitive basketball in this decade. His high school team didn’t play in the covid year of 20-21. Like a lot of big men, his knees didn’t respond well to a growth spurt and he tore a patella tendon in his left knee and then his right. Syracuse.com: “Carey underwent platelet-rich plasma therapy, or PRP, which used an injection of Carey’s own blood to improve the healing process in the tendon.” He didn’t play at all as a high school senior and just 20 minutes in three games last year during which he had 3 rebounds, 1 assist and 7 fouls.

That doesn’t leave much in the way of highlight films. This one, which appears to be prior to his knee problems, shows a springy, fast and athletic kid who hustles:


In an interview, assistant coach Allen Griffin says that Carey is “one of the most electric, high-flying guys we’ve had here in a long time.” (But that could be a comment on how electric and high flying the guys we’ve had here for a long time were.)

Peter was listed by 247 as the #248 recruit in the country and 55th best power forward and they gave him 3 stars. His skill might be put to better use at power forward. He definitely needs to get a lot stronger for either position.


Mounir Hima, junior 6-11 230

Hima was a transfer from a lousy Duquesne team and had barely played there. He was a stop-gap for the loss of Jesse Edwards’ back-up Frank Anselem, who seemed a much more talented player. But Hima has one skill he can match anyone at: he blocked 26 shots in 200 minutes of play last year. That’s 5.2 per game. The official NCAA leader was Jamarion Sharp of Western Kentucky with 4.1, (and the third place guy had 3.2). Mounir just didn’t play enough to qualify for the championship. St. John’s knows about him. Hima blocked 7 shots in 18 minutes of play in their game. He’s able to do that because of his 7-6 arm span. Your arm span is normally the same as your height. Mounir’s belongs on a 7-6 guy! He doesn’t have a lot of other skills but when your back-up center is in there, you’re just looking to keep control of things and Mr. Hima can help you do that.

His stat line from last year:
7.4m 5.4p 9.4r 0.8a 1.4s 5.2b = 12.0+ 2.8mfg 0.4mft 1.2to 7.6pf = 12.0- = 10.2NP 2.0OE 8.0FG

Some highlights:

Syracuse's Mounir Hima & Benny Williams Swat At The Eagles

Monir Hima highlights - Search Videos

Mounir was unrated by 247.


Naheem McLeod, junior 7-4 265

Naheem, who is sometimes listed as 7-5, (he said the doctors say he’ll top off at 7-7), will be the largest player in Syracuse history. He transferred in from Florida State. State’s coach Leonard Hamilton loves big guys and typically has 3-4 unusually tall players to patrol the paint and Naheem was his type of center. But this big guy wanted more playing time and when Jesse Edwards bolted for the NIL, he figured that this was the place to get it. He’s likely to be the starter.

With a guy this big, you wonder if he’s really a basketball player or just a big guy who was convinced to play basketball. I’d say he’s a basketball player who happens to be 7-4:

Naheem Mcleod - Rim finishing big - Florida State - 2022-23 Transfer Portal Highlights

He looks very smooth, with good hands. He can run the court and is a quick leaper. He understands that he doesn’t have to jump to block shots, which should help him avoid fouls. I can see a lot of alley-oops from Mintz and Starling. He’ll be great when we play zones and might have been the guy to play in JB’s scheme of having the center guard the corners. I also saw some back-to-the-basket action, some quick moves around defenders and some jump hooks that should be very effective.

These are his numbers from FSU last season:
13.1m 11.6p 8.2r 0.5a 0.1s 3.6b = 24.0+ 4.2mfg 2.1mft 1.5to 3.4pf = 11.2- = 12.8NP 5.3OE 7.5FG

247 lists Naheem as the #6 recruit and #2 center in the country yet he has 3 stars, which makes no sense.


William Patterson, freshman 7-2 220

The same question applies to William Patterson, our only high school recruit. Is he playing basketball because he’s 7-2 or is a basketball player who is 7-2? Again, I see a basketball player who is 7-2:

Where will big man William Patterson commit? | Syracuse At The Top of His List?!?!

That’s probably what Naheem looked like in his high school tape. Strangely, like Hima, he was not rated by 247.


“Light it Up Sports” on You-Tube does an in-depth look at the centers:

Taking a Look at the 2023-24 Syracuse Centers (Naheem McLeod, Mounir Hima, Peter Carey, & Big Will)

The big question is: will an ACC-level center emerge from this group, not one of which has ever started at this level? If none does, consider the case for Maliq Brown, (below).
 
IMG_9315.jpeg
 

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