Syracuse Basketball: Projected starting rotation for the 2022-23 season

Syracuse basketball (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
Syracuse basketball (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /
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Justin Taylor

I have no freaking clue about this. Haha. In all seriousness, besides the starting point guard, the second forward spot is the biggest mystery, at least to me.

Okay, so here is the cadre of forwards, although I’m taking Williams out of the equation, since we already discussed him.

You’ve got the 6-foot-10 Ajak, who I believe is primarily a power forward but also can play at center. Among the 2022 signees, I feel like Taylor maybe was recruited more as a shooting guard than a small forward, given that Buddy Boeheim has moved on.

However, with Mintz in the fold as a combo guard, I could absolutely see Taylor on the wing as a forward. There’s also Bunch, the 6-foot-9 Brown, who had a beautiful senior season for the Blue Ridge School in St. George, Va., and the 6-foot-11 Carey, who was injured and didn’t play his senior stanza for the Northfield Mount Hermon School in Mount Hermon, Mass.

As I noted earlier, unless Syracuse basketball happened to add a forward from the portal who could immediately start, I foresee the second starting forward for the ‘Cuse in 2022-23 being one of the 2022 commits, because I don’t envision Ajak cracking the starting rotation.

I don’t think Carey will get the starting nod, largely because he didn’t play a stanza ago. Then again, this could be naïve thinking on my part.

But, from my perspective, it’s either Taylor, Bunch or Brown. Brown is the most physical of the three as far as his paint presence, defensive talents, and rebounding abilities.

Additionally, Brown won multiple player of the year honors in Virginia at the conclusion of the 2021-22 campaign. That being said, it’s probably fair to prognosticate that Taylor and Bunch might have faced “tougher” competition in their senior years.

From what I’ve read about Taylor, he’s a really good shooter, he’s got good size, and he’s underrated as an athlete. Both he and Bunch are rated as top-100 players in the 2022 class, per various recruiting services.

I have no inside knowledge here, and I’m simply venturing a big-time guess, but I’ll go with Taylor getting the starting nod alongside Williams at the forward spots.