January 8, 2007

Team reacts to Jones

On Thursday morning, the day the Syracuse Orange were to face their first conference opponent in the Pittsburgh Panthers, S.U. fans found out what Orange players had only recently learned; that freshman forward Mike Jones would be leaving the team.

While it remains unclear whether Jones was frustrated over a lack of playing time, whether he was homesick, or both, it has become painfully clear that one of this year's full scholarships has been wasted.

Jones was South Carolina's Mr. Basketball in his junior season and ranked the 40th best overall recruit in the country last season according to rivals.com and the 12th best at his position.

The 6-foot-8 forward had a lean and athletic build and although he had a hard time finding playing time behind Demetris Nichols, the Orange's leading scorer this season, he seemed to be a prototypical Jim Boeheim recruit. He was long and athletic, much like many of his predecessors at the three-spot. His build and offensive potential were reminiscent of a younger Nichols.

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