a transfer from Duquesne, officially visit the Hill not too long ago and commit..."/> a transfer from Duquesne, officially visit the Hill not too long ago and commit..."/>

Syracuse basketball big-man commit is ‘a pro if he works at it,’ coach says

Syracuse basketball (Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)
Syracuse basketball (Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images) /

Big man Mounir Hima, a transfer from Duquesne, officially visit the Hill not too long ago and committed to Syracuse basketball shortly thereafter, providing the Orange with additional depth at the center spot ahead of the 2022-23 campaign.

Now, the 6-foot-11, 240-pound Hima didn’t play a ton of minutes for Duquesne out of the Atlantic 10 Conference last season, however, his prep-school coach says that this new Orange commit possesses tons of potential and promise.

"“He’s got like a 7-8 wingspan. In the middle of the zone, that’s going to help a lot,” Mark Taylor, the head coach at the St. Benedict’s Preparatory School in Newark, N.J., said in a recent interview with SyracuseOnSI publisher Mike McAllister."

Hima attended St. Benedict’s and was a member of the 2020 recruiting cycle. Besides Pittsburgh-based Duquesne, he received scholarship offers from squads including Robert Morris, St. Bonaventure, UMass, Rhode Island and VCU, according to the Verbal Commits Web site.

Syracuse basketball recently picked up a pledge from center Mounir Hima, a transfer from Duquesne.

Hima, who has three years of eligibility remaining, played in 21 contests for Duquesne in the 2021-22 term, averaging 9.6 minutes, 1.9 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.0 blocks per contest, while connecting on 42.5 percent from the field and 83.3 percent from the free-throw line, according to his bio on the ESPN Web site.

He along with 2022 three-star commit Peter Carey will serve as the primary back-ups at center for the ‘Cuse in the upcoming stanza, with junior Jesse Edwards the returning starter.

Edwards should get the bulk of the minutes for the Orange at this position in 2022-23, however, he did get injured this past February, and he also has a tendency to get into foul trouble.

So my sense is that Hima could see a decent amount of run for Syracuse basketball in 2022-23.

Taylor said to McAllister that the ‘Cuse coaching staff was honest and transparent with their message to Hima as they recruited him.

"“They were very straightforward about the role that Mounir would play. Pretty clear with Mounir about it and Mounir is confident in (his) ability. He was like, ‘yeah coach, I can definitely earn time and get more and more time.’ Very confident in the style of play and him fitting into what Syracuse needed and what he does. It just made a lot of sense for everybody,” Taylor said."

I love seeing this so much. Hima seems to be confident and hard-working, and he is prepared to earn his playing time on the court.

Taylor, and other experts whose comments I’ve come across of late, say that Hima has terrific timing to alter and block shots. He rebounds with precision and runs the floor well for a player of his size.

Hima continues to work on his offensive game, and Taylor thinks that the ‘Cuse is a strong fit for him moving forward. “He’s a pro if he works at it,” Taylor said of Hima. “There’s no question, based on his length and his size and his athleticism, he’s got a real chance long term.”

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