My Top Ten Favorite Syracuse Basketball Players Of All Time
You know, whenever one decides to put together a list like this they’re in trouble. Either you have trouble finding people to eliminate or you have issues with trying to get to 10 in the first place. Not that you didn’t have 10 people you liked, but you can get bogged down in your own minutiae and find that your own standards are suddenly too high to get to your magic number.
Then there’s the act of sharing such a subjective list. Everyone will have their favorite period, and you find that there are some players you might want to name that you never actually got to see play; that won’t work now will it? Or some players who are close to you in time and thus you think of them as your favorites without remembering until later just how much you enjoyed someone else.
I’m fearless like that, so I decided to undertake this task with some of my own rules.
One, they had to be players I actually saw play. This knocks out Dave Bing because I was only 7 years old when I could have possibly seen him, but my dad wasn’t a basketball fan so it never came up.
Two, no current players can be on my list. A couple of them might make it in years gone by, for for now I’m just going to enjoy them as a team that’s undefeated as of the time this post is going live, 23-0 with Pittsburgh on the horizon later this evening.
And three, to save myself a bit of agita, I’m not worried about placing them in a specific 1-10 order. Nope, not going there. Sure, they’ll be in some order, and I’ve decided I’m putting them in alphabetic order by last name just to save myself some grief.
Of course you can put together your own list on your blog so I can come by to pick on you, share some names in the comments, or tell me I’m crazy and why and move on with life. A bit of fun to warm things up on a Wednesday morning. Here we go:
Carmelo Anthony – Yes, this is alphabetical, but what more is there to say than the fact that he led Syracuse to the national championship? We only got to enjoy him one year here but he’s turned into a great NBA player and gave back to the university with the Carmelo K Anthony Center. Let’s see, how can we get juiced for this…
Roosevelt Bouie – Rosie stood out in more ways than one. Sure he was tall, but what a soft touch he had, along with that big afro. He was a pretty dominant force and one of the two cogs that actually brought not only Syracuse, but eastern basketball into real prominence on a continuing basis. You know his counterpart is on this list. 🙂
Derrick Coleman – I loved watching Derrick play, and man, did he love getting those rebounds. I’ve never understood how so many teams forget that some players are left handed, and DC burned lots of teams because of it. And of course he helped get the team into the 1987 championship game and had 19 rebounds, almost double the next closest person.
Sherman Douglas – The General; what more needs to be said? He was the master of the alley-oop way before anyone else really seemed to be doing it with such proficiency, and he could score when needed. He led the team into the championship game in 1987 and scored 20 points.
Jonny Flynn – All anyone needs to know is that Flynn played 67 of the 70 minutes of that 6-overtime victory against Connecticut and scored 34 points to know why he’s on this list. I’m still of the opinion that if Donte Green hadn’t gone to the NBA after only one year this team would have easily gone to the Final Four. You know, we need a bit of that:
Gerry McNamara – Come on now, how could I leave G-Mac off this list? Those 6 3-pointers he hit in the first half against Kansas were big. Then in his last year he literally carried the ‘Cuse to the Big East Championship with a broken body. He gave it all and was superb in doing it; overrated my… hmmph!
Lawrence Moten – Talk about one of the smoothest players ever, and with those socks! I loved watching him play, and it seemed that he pretty much could score at will without effort. He wsa both Syracuse’s and the Big East’s all time leading scorer and the only player in ‘Cuse history to score 500 points 4 years in a row.
Louis Orr – You can’t have the Louis & Bouie show without Louie right? He had a smooth game as well but he also had a lot of heart. When Syracuse beat Tennessee and the vaunted Ernie-Bernie tandem it put Syracuse on the map for good and brought eastern basketball with it. And then all those great years with the Knicks; wonderful stuff.
John Wallace – Wallace was the man, lots of talent and heart and literally put the team on his back and led them to the 1997 championship game against Louisville. Take away that one bad call that gave him four fouls and led to his fouling out of the game eventually and we could have had that championship 6 years earlier.
Pearl Washington – Pearl! What more needs to be said? The most exciting player Syracuse has ever had, a guy who, when the moment was upon him, only failed once ever that I can think of (I still hate Walter Berry for that). I was at that Boston College game; nuff said. In his last year he led the team to a 23-4 record while leading the team in scoring, and a Big East Championship against Georgetown (you know how we feel about Georgetown). Yeah, we need some of this:
There’s my list; let’s see who’s on yours.