got involved with fast-rising 2023 big man Joseph Estrella relatively early on in..."/> got involved with fast-rising 2023 big man Joseph Estrella relatively early on in..."/>

Syracuse Basketball: It’s impossible not to root for recruit Joseph Estrella

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

Syracuse basketball got involved with fast-rising 2023 big man Joseph Estrella relatively early on in his recruitment, offering the 6-foot-11 power forward/center a scholarship last August at the Orange’s annual Elite Camp.

And while media reports indicate that the ‘Cuse coaching staff continues to recruit Estrella hard, his recruitment has blown up on a national scale.

His junior season for South Portland High School in South Portland, Maine, was a stellar one, and Estrella proved one of the top performers in April during two NCAA live periods on the AAU circuit, according to national analysts and scouts.

Estrella’s list of offers is growing all the time, presently hovering around 20. Multiple blue-blood programs are showing interest in him, according to recruiting services and reports.

I remain hopeful that the Orange can amount to a solid contender for Estrella in his flourishing recruitment, but competition clearly is intensifying.

That being said, I’m rooting for this fine young man regardless of whether he ultimately chooses the ‘Cuse or not, and I’ll explain why.

Syracuse basketball priority big-man recruit Joseph Estrella is a fine young man.

Last month, during the second of two live periods, Estrella and his teammates with the New England-based Middlesex Magic won the 17 & under spring title in the Under Armour Association league, where games were held in Kansas City, Mo.

According to reports, at this UAA stop, coaches from Syracuse basketball and other teams such as California, Penn State, Maryland, Duke, Kansas, North Carolina and Villanova were among those who watched Estrella compete.

Yet even with his recruitment on fire, and heavyweights in college basketball pursuing him, Estrella remains humble and is genuinely excited about every single high-major offer that he’s received, per Middlesex Magic head coach Mike Crotty.

"In a recent story by Christian McCollum of the Irish Sports Daily, Crotty said in part about Estrella, “As a person, he’s smart, funny, caring, unselfish. He’s a guy everyone roots for and a guy who’s more excited about his teammates’ success than his own; wonderful personality.”"

At this juncture, Estrella’s offer sheet has appeared to eclipse 20 in total, from teams including UConn, Iona, Miami, UMass, Illinois, Missouri, Xavier, California, Maryland, Notre Dame, Wake Forest, Wisconsin, Virginia Tech, Boston College, Iowa, Providence, Tennessee, Harvard, Maine, Penn State and Marquette, according to recruiting services and Estrella’s Twitter page.

A bevy of national analysts and scouts has said in recent weeks that Estrella is one of the hottest prospects in 2023, and he’s primed to enter the national rankings for this cycle in the near future.

In a recent interview with SyracuseOnSI publisher Mike McAllister, Estrella said that Orange coaches, lately, have been “ramping” up their recruitment of him.

Estrella, who will play his senior year in the 2022-23 stanza for the Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro, N.H., told McAllister that schools presently recruiting him hard include Syracuse basketball, California, Duke, Penn State, Providence and Xavier.

Naturally, the Blue Devils in the hunt are concerning. I hope that the ‘Cuse can get Estrella to the Hill for an official visit. I think that he would prove a huge foundational piece for Syracuse basketball in 2023.

But, even if he picks another college squad, I’ll be rooting for him regardless. He’s a classy young man.

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