Syracuse Basketball: Status of forward Benny Williams ‘has not’ changed

Syracuse basketball, Benny Williams (Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports)
Syracuse basketball, Benny Williams (Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports) /

It seems unlikely that Syracuse basketball junior forward Benny Williams will be playing on Wednesday night in game two of the 2023-24 regular season for the Orange.

On Wednesday afternoon, a team spokesperson told me via e-mail that as of now, the status of Williams “has not” changed.

The spokesperson added that the ‘Cuse would likely “distribute an announcement if and when Benny’s status has changed.”

On November 1, Syracuse basketball said on X, “Benny Williams has been suspended from the team for a violation of team rules. He is expected to rejoin the program soon.”

The program and its first-year head coach, Adrian Autry, have not provided further details on why the 6-foot-9, 210-pound Williams was suspended, nor has Autry given further specifics as to when Williams might return to the ‘Cuse.

Syracuse basketball junior forward Benny Williams remains suspended, a spokesperson says.

On Wednesday night beginning at 7 pm, the Orange will host Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (“MAAC”) school Canisius from Buffalo, N.Y., with live-streaming coverage on the ACC Network Extra and ESPN+.

This past Monday evening, in Autry’s debut after taking the reins from Hall of Famer Jim Boeheim at the helm of Syracuse basketball, the ‘Cuse defeated America East Conference member New Hampshire by a final count of 83-72 on the Hill.

With Benny Williams unavailable, against New Hampshire, sophomore wing Justin Taylor was inserted into the starting line-up at small forward. Taylor did not disappoint, as he collected 14 points, six rebounds, three assists, two steals and one block. He was also 2-of-3 from beyond the arc.

No disrespect to Canisius whatsoever, but I think that Syracuse basketball will be able to take care of business on Wednesday night, even without Williams in the line-up.

However, on November 14, the Orange will battle Colgate at the JMA Wireless Dome, and the Raiders have beaten the ‘Cuse two times in a row.

After that, and right before the Thanksgiving holiday, Syracuse basketball will compete in a loaded field at the 2023 Maui Jim Maui Invitational in Honolulu from November 20 to November 22. In its first game there, the Orange will play Tennessee, with its second affair versus either Purdue or Gonzaga.

All three of those squads are presently ranked in the top 12 across the country in the major top-25 polls. Suffice it to say, it would prove critical for the ‘Cuse to see Benny Williams back on the court in the near future.

Williams, who is from Bowie, Md., was a five-star, top-25 national prospect according to in the 2021 recruiting class. Ahead of the 2023-24 season commencing, Autry had said more than once that he was expecting big things from Benny Williams in his junior term, and some national analysts have been echoing the head coach’s sentiment of late.

As a sophomore during the 2022-23 stanza, he averaged roughly 22 minutes, seven points and four rebounds per contest, while hitting on a strong 39.6 percent from the 3-point line, in somewhat limited attempts.

"Not too long ago, CBS Sports college basketball insider Jon Rothstein included Williams in a piece where he looked at 20 under-the-radar breakout players for the 2023-24 season. Rothstein wrote, “A former top-30 recruit, Williams has to finally live up to the billing that he arrived in Upstate NY with out of high school if the Orange are going to return to national relevance. Adrian Autry needs 10 and 7 from Williams …”"

I sincerely hope that Benny Williams is back with the Syracuse basketball program sooner rather than later.

dark. Next. Syracuse Basketball: 4-star Elijah Moore to sign NLI on Saturday – yeah!!!