Syracuse Basketball: Benny Williams, veteran guards returning is big time

Syracuse basketball (Photo by Bryan Bennett/Getty Images)
Syracuse basketball (Photo by Bryan Bennett/Getty Images) /

For a large part of the recently concluded 2021-22 season, a sizable contingent of my fellow Syracuse basketball fans believed that freshman forward Benny Williams was going to transfer in the off-season.

Now, none of these fans, I would imagine, had any kind of inside information regarding this topic. Benny didn’t tell them he was transferring, and I assume that most fans don’t have sources within the Orange program. Maybe I’m wrong.

In any event, I have to admit that I found it annoying that these “rumors” about Benny would continually come up, and they were spread by some fans, and no one else, as far as I could tell.

I understand the sentiment. The NCAA’s transfer policy, where student-athletes can transfer once and retain immediate eligibility, makes it so much easier for college basketball players to bolt if they’re unhappy.

Plus, Williams came to the Hill as a highly rated recruit in the 2021 cycle out of the powerhouse IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla., but he didn’t play all that much in head coach Jim Boeheim’s rotation in 2021-22.

So, understandably, some fans felt that Williams, the Bowie, Md., native, was going to leave Central New York after his freshman campaign. Williams himself had to shoot down these non-sense rumors on more than one occasion.

Folks, freshman forward Benny Williams is returning to Syracuse basketball.

According to an article from our friend James Szuba, an excellent writer with the fabulous, Williams, junior point guard Joe Girard III and junior guard Symir Torrence will be back in an Orange uniform in the 2022-23 term.

Junior center Jesse Edwards, who unfortunately got injured this past February, is expected to return to the Hill. Sophomore center Frank Anselem has entered his name into the transfer portal.

We’re waiting to hear about senior forward Cole Swider and redshirt sophomore big man John Bol Ajak. The ‘Cuse has a really strong six-member 2022 class, buoyed by the recent addition of four-star combo guard Judah Mintz.

But Edwards, Girard and Torrence provide veteran leadership and experience. Williams will still be an underclassman as a sophomore, although he does have a year with the Orange program under his belt.

I’m beyond thrilled that Williams is returning to Central New York. He showed his athleticism and potential in a break-out performance versus top-10 Duke inside the Carrier Dome near the end of the 2021-22 regular season.

I’d love to see Torrence as the starting point guard in 2022-23, while Girard is moved to shooting guard, his more natural position, from my perspective.

More importantly than anything else, I really hope that the transfer rumors started by some Syracuse basketball fans regarding Benny Williams completely stop. He’s still an Orange player (insert smiley face here).

Next. Turns out Syracuse basketball had chance with 4-star Judah Mintz after all. dark