Syracuse Basketball: 7-foot-4 transfer center to visit ‘Cuse – that’s big time

Syracuse basketball (Syndication: Tallahassee Democrat)
Syracuse basketball (Syndication: Tallahassee Democrat) /

Syracuse basketball coaches continue to look for a center to replace senior Jesse Edwards, and the Orange will soon welcome a big-man transfer to the Hill for a visit.

I wrote not too long ago that the ‘Cuse coaching staff had reached out to Naheem McLeod, a 7-foot-4 sophomore center at fellow Atlantic Coast Conference member Florida State who is in the NCAA’s transfer portal.

McLeod said he plans to take a visit to Syracuse basketball this weekend, he revealed on Twitter. That’s an encouraging development for the Orange.

Syracuse basketball head coach Adrian Autry has said that the ‘Cuse is focused on finding a veteran center to help replace the void left by Edwards recently deciding to transfer to West Virginia. The Orange does have three centers heading into the 2023-24 season, but all of them are inexperienced.

Naheem McLeod, a transfer center from Florida State, will visit Syracuse basketball.

Since he entered the transfer portal, McLeod has reportedly heard from a variety of teams, such as St. John’s, Villanova, Gonzaga, Arizona, Clemson, South Carolina, Wake Forest, Texas, West Virginia, Georgetown, Memphis, Pittsburgh, Butler, Minnesota, Rutgers, Ole Miss and Temple, among others, according to a recent tweet from 24/7 High School Hoops.

McLeod, who hails from Philadelphia, has spent the past two terms with the Seminoles. In the 2022-23 season, he appeared in 28 games, averaging 13.1 minutes, 3.8 points, 2.7 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per contest, while connecting on 54.7 percent from the field but just 40.6 percent from the free-throw line.

Before heading to FSU, McLeod competed for Chipola College in Marianna, Fla. He was a member of the 2019 cycle, attending Plymouth Whitemarsh High School in Plymouth Meeting, Pa.

This off-season, media reports have indicated that Syracuse basketball coaches have reached out to numerous transfer centers, including Michigan junior Hunter Dickinson, Oklahoma State junior Moussa Cisse, Texas A&M sophomore Javonte Brown-Ferguson and North Texas junior Abou Ousmane, who has committed to Xavier.

Dickinson, per reports, is not considering the Orange at this time. I haven’t seen much lately regarding Cisse or Brown-Ferguson as it pertains to the ‘Cuse. Is McLeod the Orange’s best shot at picking up another center prior to 2023-24?

Maybe. Maybe not. Either way, at 7-foot-4, McLeod has the height and length to potentially be a nice pick-up for Syracuse basketball. I’m confident that the ‘Cuse coaching staff will wow McLeod on his visit this coming weekend.

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