Syracuse Basketball: Several priority targets seem to be emerging in 2023

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

Syracuse basketball has offered scholarships to more than 15 high-school players in the junior recruiting cycle, according to media reports, recruiting services and other resources.

I’ve said on several occasions in recent months that it has proven tough to gauge which guys in this class the Orange coaching staff may be honed in on, based on reports I’ve read, interviews given by these 2023 players, and comments from national recruiting analysts.

I always preface that I’m not a recruiting analyst myself, however, I’d also say that it does appear that perhaps a couple of high-priority targets are emerging for ‘Cuse coaches in the 2023 class.

Naturally, things can ebb and flow rather quickly in the ever-changing recruiting world, but for now at least, if I had to venture a guess, I’d say that the three top targets for the Orange in the 2023 cycle are four-star guard Elmarko Jackson, four-star shooting guard Reid Ducharme, and big man Joseph Estrella, who undoubtedly will enter the national rankings in this class at some point sooner rather than later.

Syracuse basketball may be prioritizing a couple of 2023 prospects at this juncture.

In the recently concluded 2021-22 stanza for high schools and prep teams, the 6-foot-4 Jackson, the 6-foot-6 Ducharme, and the 6-foot-10 Estrella all performed at an excellent level in their junior terms.

Jackson goes to the Academy of the New Church in Bryn Athyn, Pa., and Ducharme attends the Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro, N.H.

Estrella, a power forward/center who is easily one of the hottest prospects in 2023, was a star for South Portland High School in South Portland, Maine, in 2021-22, although he is transferring to the Brewster Academy for his senior year.

Both this past weekend and a few weeks ago, college coaches and others were allowed to watch high-school players in person during various AAU competitions on the shoe-sponsored circuits as part of NCAA live periods.

I’ve come across a bunch of articles and comments on social media from national analysts and scouts that speak to Jackson, Ducharme and Estrella all having strong performances during these live periods.

Last weekend, according to 247Sports national basketball director Eric Bossi, Syracuse basketball head coach Jim Boeheim and some of his assistants watched Estrella, who suits up for the New England-based Middlesex Magic on the Under Armour circuit.

Estrella’s recruitment is blowing up. He was offered by the ‘Cuse this past August at the Orange’s annual Elite Camp. He has, on multiple occasions, spoken highly of the Syracuse basketball program.

As we noted in a column on Sunday, Ducharme said in a recent interview with scouting service Pro Insight that ‘Cuse assistant coach Gerry McNamara, these days, is showing him a lot of love.

Ducharme, who competes for the Boston Amateur Basketball Club on the Nike EYBL circuit, was also offered by Syracuse basketball last August at the Orange’s Elite Camp.

Also on Sunday, we published an article on Jackson, whom the ‘Cuse offered earlier in April. Per his interview with 247Sports national analyst Dushawn London, Jackson says that Syracuse basketball is among the schools presently recruiting him the hardest.

What’s more, London wrote that Jackson plans to make an official visit to the Hill over the summer. In AAU events, Jackson plays for WE R1 in the Under Armour league.

We’ll obviously continue to follow these three ‘Cuse 2023 recruiting targets closely, and I’ll be interested to see if Ducharme and/or Estrella end up taking trips to the Orange campus as well.

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