Syracuse Basketball: Jesse Edwards cuts list to 3, including 2022 champs

Syracuse basketball, Jesse Edwards (Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports)
Syracuse basketball, Jesse Edwards (Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) /

Syracuse basketball senior center Jesse Edwards, who only a few days ago said he would enter the NCAA’s transfer portal, is down to three contenders still in the running for him, according to media reports.

The terrific On3 national analyst, Joe Tipton, first reported that the 6-foot-11 Edwards has trimmed his list to three schools, and they are Gonzaga, Kansas and West Virginia.

Tipton added that the native of Amsterdam, Netherlands, plans to take his first official visit to Big 12 Conference member West Virginia this weekend. Edwards’ final three are impressive. West Virginia made the 2023 NCAA Tournament.

Kansas, another Big 12 team, was a No. 1 seed in this spring’s March Madness but got knocked out in the round of 32 by No. 8 seed Arkansas. However, the Jayhawks did win the 2022 NCAA Tournament.

Gonzaga fell in the 2023 Big Dance to eventual national champion Connecticut in the Elite Eight. The Bulldogs reached the NCAA Tournament championship game in 2017 and 2021, losing to North Carolina and Baylor, respectively.

Syracuse basketball senior center Jesse Edwards, who is in the transfer portal, has a final three.

On Monday night, I first reported that Jesse Edwards was not planning to return to the Orange for the 2023-24 season as a graduate student. The next day, Edwards said on social media that he was entering the transfer portal, which certainly disappointed many ‘Cuse fans.

In recent days, per media reports and comments from recruiting experts, Edwards has heard from a ton of top-notch teams, such as those in his final three along with others like Michigan, Kansas State, Florida State, Memphis, LSU, Arkansas, Seton Hall, Missouri, Vanderbilt, Florida, N.C. State, Georgia, BYU and Texas Tech.

In the most recent ranking of transfers out there in college basketball on the On3 Web site, Jesse Edwards resided at No. 13 overall. On Thursday, when ESPN updated its top-100 transfers ranking, he was No. 3 across the country, according to a tweet from ESPN’s Jeff Borzello.

Syracuse basketball wasn’t good in the 2022-23 season, finishing at 17-15 overall. But Jesse Edwards had a strong senior year, averaging 14.5 points, 10.3 boards, 2.7 blocks, 1.6 assists and 1.4 steals a game, while connecting on 59.2 percent from the field and 72.9 percent from the charity stripe.

He was named to the All-ACC third team as well as the league’s All-Defensive unit in 2022-23. Over the past two campaigns, as a junior and then a senior, Jesse Edwards blossomed into one of the best big men within the Atlantic Coast Conference.

His decision to hit the transfer portal is a tough blow for the ‘Cuse as the team looks ahead to the 2023-24 term.

Next. Syracuse Orange: Adam Weitsman departing ‘Cuse NIL is a big-time blow. dark