Syracuse added a key piece this weekend as NYCHoops.net reported that Providence transfer Paschal Chukwu committed to the Orange.
The 7-foot-2 Chukwu was a highly sought-after transfer this offseason as he visited schools like Kansas, Nebraska and Michigan State after leaving the Friars after his freshman season.
Although Chukwu will have to sit out the 2015-16 season due to NCAA transfer regulations, he’ll have three seasons of eligibility remaining once he’s allowed to play. Adding a center of Chukwu’s size should help the Orange’s interior defense, especially in their 2-3 zone that will camp him near the rim.
During his freshman season at Providence, Chukwu averaged 2.6 points and 2.4 rebounds per game. The Orange have Dajuan Coleman and Chinoso Obokoh returning down low, but Coleman is coming off of injury problems the last two seasons and Obokoh has only played sparingly. Chukwu gives the Orange an extra body down low who should contribute immediately once he is able to play.
Report: Former Providence center Paschal Chukwu to visit Syracuse
Having already visited Kansas, Nebraska and Michigan State, former Providence center Paschal Chukwu is still working through the process of picking a new school. Thursday afternoon CBSSports.com reported that the former Friar will visit Syracuse this weekend.
Also being considered by the 7-foot-2 Chukwu as possible transfer destinations per the report are Iona and Virginia. Chukwu averaged 2.6 points and 2.4 rebound per game as a freshman at Providence.
In regards to the Orange, Jim Boeheim can use another big man for the future. While the Orange welcome back Chinoso Obokoh and Dajuan Coleman and add freshman Moustapha Diagne, Coleman hasn’t played much during his time at Syracuse to to injury problems and Obokoh has played sparingly as well.
Chukwu wouldn’t be eligible to play next season for the Orange due to NCAA transfer rules, but adding another interior piece for the future would help Syracuse. The Orange did lose a scholarship as a result of sanctions handed down by the NCAA earlier this year, but they’d still have room for Chukwu in 2015-16 and beyond.
Heading into the 2015-16 season players such as Diagne, fellow freshman Tyler Lydon and junior Tyler Roberson will be key pieces as Syracuse looks to account for the loss of All-ACC forward Rakeem Christmas. Chris McCullough, who left for the NBA after his freshman season, suffered a torn ACL during the non-conference portion of the 2014-15 campaign.
Report: Former Providence 7-footer will visit a Big Ten school
Former Providence center Paschal Chukwu is one of the most highly sought after transfers of this offseason and at 7-foot-2 he brings a lot of natural size to the center position. After previously visiting Virginia, Kansas, Nebraska and Iona this offseason, Chukwu is taking a visit to Michigan State on Monday, according to a report from CBSSports.com‘s Jon Rothstein.
Chukwu averaged 9.9 minutes per game and averaged 2.6 points, 2.4 rebounds and 0.7 blocks in those limited minutes. After sitting out the 2015-16 college basketball season, Chukwu will have three years of eligibility and he has some upside to improve in these next few seasons.
The Spartans have a lot of recruiting momentum going on right now. They landed four-star power forward Nick Ward in May and reeled in five-star shooting guard Josh Langford on Monday morning. If there were to land a transfer like Chukwu, it would be a very nice addition to an already strong start in the class.
Earlier this week 7-foot-2 center Paschal Chukwu caught many by surprise with his decision to transfer from Providence after just one season. Predictably it hasn’t taken long for programs to reach out to Chukwu, who will have three years of eligibility remaining at whichever school he decides to transfer to.
Two programs that have reportedly reached out to Chukwu are Kansas and Nebraska, with Chukwu having already scheduled a visit to Lawrence. As first reported by JayhawkSlant.com, Chukwu’s visit is scheduled for the first weekend of June. Chukwu didn’t see much playing time last season, as he averaged just 9.9 minutes per outing for the Friars, but he would be a good addition for a team whose front court depth will take a hit after the 2015-16 campaign.
Kansas, which has won the last 11 Big 12 regular season titles, will lose Perry Ellis, Jamari Traylor and Hunter Mickelson from its front court. Bill Self does have two talented freshmen in Carlton Bragg and Cheick Diallo due to arrive on campus this summer, but there’s still a need for another addition.
Chukwu wouldn’t be able to play immediately obviously, but the year in residency would allow him time to get used to Self’s system while also working against some quality big men in practice.
As for Nebraska, the Huskers are in a similar position when it comes to their need for another body in the post. Sophomore Jacob Hammond is their most experienced interior player, and he only played an average of 3.3 minutes per game in 11 appearances.
Nebraska will also add two forwards this summer in freshmen Ed Morrow and Michael Jacobson, but the recent de-commitment of junior college forward Keanu Pinder strengthens the need for a front court player. Height is something that coaches can’t teach, so Chukwu’s recruitment should only intensify in the coming weeks.
Providence is losing a former top-100 big man as the school announced that Paschal Chukwu will transfer. The 7-foot-2 Chukwu played in 34 games during the 2014-15 season and averaged 2.6 points and 2.4 rebounds per game.
“I would like to wish Paschal success in his future plans,” Providence coach Ed Cooley said in the release. “He helped us have a successful season in 2014-15 and advance to the NCAA Tournament.”
Chukwu was regarded as the No. 61 overall prospect in the 2014 class, according to Rivals, and showed flashes of potential during his first season in college basketball. With tremendous natural size and plenty of upside, Chukwu could command plenty of interest in teams looking for another big body.
After sitting out the 2015-16 season due to NCAA transfer regulations, Chukwu will have three seasons of eligibility remaining.