Syracuse Basketball: Former Orange big-man recruit enters transfer portal

Syracuse basketball (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)
Syracuse basketball (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images) /

Ashton Smith, who held a Syracuse basketball scholarship offer as a three-star big man in the 2021 recruiting cycle, is hitting the NCAA’s transfer portal.

Per On3 national analyst Jamie Shaw, the 6-foot-9 power forward/center out of Southeastern Conference member Texas A&M has entered the transfer portal.

Interestingly enough, under Smith’s bio on the Texas A&M athletics department Web site, it is noted that Smith’s uncle played for the Orange.

Smith took a redshirt season at Texas A&M in the 2021-22 term. As a redshirt freshman in 2022-23, it doesn’t look like he played in any games for the Aggies.

Syracuse basketball offered a scholarship to big man Ashton Smith in the spring of 2020.

As a member of the 2021 class, Smith was a three-star prospect, according to several recruiting services.

He played for Nimitz High School in Houston and finished up his high-school career at Legacy the School of Sport Sciences in Spring, Texas.

Per recruiting Web sites, while in high school, Smith’s offer sheet included Syracuse basketball, Texas A&M, Houston, Virginia Tech, Seton Hall, Nebraska and North Texas, among others.

In August of 2020, Smith on Twitter named a top four of Virginia Tech, Seton Hall, Houston and Nebraska. Ultimately, though, he committed to Texas A&M.

The industry-generated 247Sports Composite rated him as three-stars, No. 215 overall, No. 30 at center and No. 10 in Texas within the 2021 cycle.

The 247Sports recruiting service had Smith as three stars, No. 26 at center and No. 10 in Texas. He was also three stars via ESPN, along with the No. 43 power forward and the No. 17 prospect in Texas.

This off-season, Syracuse basketball coaches have been mining the transfer portal to pick up a veteran center to help offset the loss of senior Jesse Edwards, who has moved on to West Virginia.

Heading into 2023-24, the Orange is expected to have three centers on its roster, although all of them are inexperienced. Lately, media reports have suggested that the Syracuse basketball coaching staff has reached out to a handful of transfer centers.

To that end, Naheem McLeod recently said on Twitter that he will visit the ‘Cuse this weekend. McLeod is a 7-foot-4 sophomore center at fellow Atlantic Coast Conference member Florida State who is in the transfer portal.

Next. Syracuse Basketball: Big man with Orange offer makes college decision. dark