Syracuse Basketball: 4-star’s ‘final decision will come down to’ SU, UCLA

Syracuse basketball, Jim Boeheim (Photo by Bryan Bennett /Getty Images)
Syracuse basketball, Jim Boeheim (Photo by Bryan Bennett /Getty Images) /

On Monday night, Syracuse basketball priority recruiting target Marcus Adams Jr. disclosed on social media that he has received a formal scholarship offer from UCLA, which is a top-10 team in the current 2022-23 season and went to the Final Four during the 2021 NCAA Tournament.

Cory DeSanti, the head coach of the Los Angeles-based Elev8 Elite, which is an Adidas-sponsored program and Adams’ AAU team, tells me that, “I would say that UCLA is Marcus’ dream school.”

Adams, a fast-rising and prolific-scoring four-star small forward, attends Nathaniel Narbonne High School in the Harbor City area of Los Angeles. UCLA is absolutely his hometown college team and a formidable contender in Adams’ recruitment. In fact, he recently released a top five of the ‘Cuse, Texas, UCLA, Oregon and Mississippi State.

The 6-foot-8 Adams, one of the hottest prospects nationwide regardless of class designation, recently took an official visit to the Hill, during a trip where he attended the Orange’s five-point home loss to then-No. 6 Virginia.

The AAU coach of four-star small forward Marcus Adams Jr. says Adams is high on Syracuse basketball.

DeSanti says that during Adams’ official visit to the ‘Cuse, “Syracuse blew him away.” DeSanti adds, “I personally and I know Marcus as well absolutely loves the Syracuse staff and school.”

According to some recent media reports, Adams has unofficially visited UCLA several times. When I asked DeSanti about potential future official visits for Adams, DeSanti replied “Mississippi State, UCLA, possibly Oregon should be official visits.”

The AAU coach noted that a college decision by Adams could probably come “within the next 30-60 days.”

When I asked DeSanti if he thinks that UCLA is now considered the front-runner in Adams’ recruitment, DeSanti said, “the final decision will come down to Syracuse and UCLA.”

Now, for some context, Adams said in a tweet on February 4 that, “for now my recruitment is still completely open.”

In a tweet on February 7, the Twitter account of M&L Tonight said that Adams may be eyeing an unofficial visit to Syracuse basketball for the Orange’s home game versus Wake Forest on Saturday, March 4, at which time the team will celebrate Senior Day and the 20th-anniversary of the ‘Cuse 2003 national-title squad.

As I opined in another recent column, the Syracuse basketball community, including former players, current players, recruits and fans, are fully in support of Adams and are excited about him potentially coming to the Orange down the line.

Adams has the option to be a member of either the 2023 or the 2024 class, according to reports. If he stays in the 2024 cycle and runs on the AAU circuit during the upcoming spring and summer months, Adams is likely to suit up for the Compton, Calif.-based Compton Magic in the Adidas league, per reports.

Adams, due to his stellar play and rise in the national rankings, has seen his recruitment blow up lately.

When I penned this column, On3 had him as four stars. The industry-generated On3 Consensus rated Adams as three stars, No. 114 overall, No. 22 at small forward and No. 9 in California. Both On3 and the On3 Consensus base their rankings on Adams in the 2024 class.

Over at 247Sports, he is No. 61 overall, No. 16 at small forward and No. 6 in California within the 2024 cycle.

As I first reported in late January, businessman, philanthropist and top SU booster Adam Weitsman has offered a significant name, image and likeness deal to Adams. Weitsman has told me that his NIL offer to Adams is for the 2023 class.

While Weitsman declined to provide specifics about the length of this proposed NIL deal to Adams, he did say that it is a six-figure offer with incentives that could grow this deal to seven figures.

Next. Syracuse Basketball: Melo’s 4-star son heads to country’s top super league. dark