Syracuse Basketball: 5-star Brewster wing’s recruitment is tough to gauge

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

I don’t get the sense that Syracuse basketball is a major player in the recruitment of 2023 five-star guard/wing Matas Buzelis, but then again, national analysts are having a challenging time themselves trying to decipher which suitors may be front-runners for the top-10 national prospect.

The 6-foot-10 Buzelis received a scholarship offer from the Orange in November of 2020, well before his national rankings soared and his list of offers significantly expanded.

The Gatorade Player of the Year in New Hampshire during his junior campaign in 2021-22 for the Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro, N.H., Buzelis has been playing quite well of late in AAU competitions for the Boston-based Expressions Elite Basketball in Nike’s EYBL league.

According to recruiting services, Buzelis holds around two-dozen scholarship offers from a range of high-major programs. He took official visits during his junior year to Kentucky, Wake Forest and Florida State.

Last September, Syracuse basketball coaches visited five-star Matas Buzelis.

As we’ve noted in the past, the Orange coaching staff has watched Buzelis and some of his prep-school teammates, such as four-star shooting guard Reid Ducharme, at the Brewster Academy.

In a recent piece, 247Sports national basketball director Eric Bossi mentioned a handful of teams that appear to be in the mix for Buzelis, including Florida State, Kentucky, North Carolina, Wake Forest and Arizona, along with the NBA’s G League.

But as Bossi and other national recruiting analysts have said, Buzelis is pretty tight-lipped about his recruiting process. According to Bossi’s article, Buzelis is likely to set up some additional visits in the future, but those trips may not occur until after the summer months.

"Buzelis said in part to the 247Sports analyst, “I’m not really trying to let anything out. I don’t have other visits planned yet, I’m just focused on basketball. I’m just looking at the schools that have offered me.”"

So does that last sentence from Buzelis mean that the Orange has a chance to prevail in his recruitment? I have no idea. I guess there’s always a chance for the ‘Cuse up until a high-school player cuts his list and doesn’t include Syracuse basketball, or he ultimately commits to another squad besides the Orange.

In recent months, when Buzelis has discussed his recruitment with national analysts, I haven’t seen the ‘Cuse mentioned. Conversely, Syracuse basketball coaches appear to be prioritizing other 2023 prospects, like Ducharme.

Whichever team ends up landing Buzelis will get a uniquely talented player. It probably won’t be the Orange. Then again, you never know.

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