Syracuse Basketball: Boeheim expects Joe Girard III to average 20 points

Syracuse basketball (Photo by Rich Barnes/Getty Images)
Syracuse basketball (Photo by Rich Barnes/Getty Images) /

Joe Girard III is one of the veterans on this season’s Syracuse basketball roster, and Orange head coach Jim Boeheim recently said that he expects the guard to have a monster senior stanza.

Of the ‘Cuse likely core rotation in the upcoming 2022-23 campaign, Girard, center Jesse Edwards and guard Symir Torrence are seniors, forward Benny Williams is a sophomore, and then the Orange has a six-member 2022 recruiting class and a young big-man transfer.

In short, this current roster for the ‘Cuse blends a few veterans with a whole lot of underclassmen. Joe Girard III, who was a ridiculous scoring machine in high school, is expected to average “at least 20 points” per game in 2022-23, Boeheim said in a recent article published by college basketball insider Jon Rothstein of CBS Sports.

Even though Syracuse basketball finished at a disappointing 16-17 overall in 2021-22, Girard put forth a pretty solid junior term. But as he shifts from primarily a point guard to a shooting guard in 2022-23, Boeheim expects big, big things from Girard.

Syracuse basketball guard Joe Girard III is poised for a massive senior year, his head coach says.

In 2021-22, Girard averaged 13.8 points, 4.2 assists, 2.8 rebounds, 1.6 steals and 2.8 turnovers per game, according to ESPN statistics. He connected on an impressive 40.3 percent from beyond the arc, as well as a stellar 88.2 percent from the charity stripe.

Going from around 14 points per encounter to 20 or more points per affair is a sizable jump, but I agree with Boeheim that Girard can do it. Highly touted freshman Judah Mintz, a 2022 four-star prospect, is likely to start at point guard.

That moves Joe Girard III off the ball. At the Atlantic Coast Conference’s recently held media day, Boeheim said that playing at shooting guard will enable Girard to be “more offensive-minded than he has been because he had to run the team,” according to a transcript of Boeheim’s comments from SyracuseOnSI publisher Mike McAllister.

Edwards, speaking at ACC media day, says that Girard brings a lot of energy and helps get his teammates fired up on the court. “He spaces the floor really well,” Edwards said, adding, “it’s always easy to play with him.”

When the ACC recently disclosed its preseason media poll, no one on the Syracuse basketball roster, including Girard, received a single vote for either the preseason All-ACC first team or the second squad.

"I was surprised that Joe Girard III, and Edwards, didn’t garner some votes. Said Boeheim: “Joe is probably one of the most underrated players that I’ve coached in terms of the respect he should have and what he has. He’s been one of the best guards in the league numbers-wise since he came into the league, and I don’t really think he’s gotten the appreciation he should have.”"

Next. Syracuse Basketball: Projected starting rotation 2.0 for the 2022-23 season. dark