One five star and one four star, both at positions of need, are big time gets for almost any program. For Syracuse, it's par for the course over the last decade plus. Kaleb Joseph made his verbal commitment during an on campus visit, giving the Orange their top target once Chris McCullough was in the fold.
Syracuse had tracked Joseph throughout the summer, and have stayed in touch during the recruiting cycle. They made him their priority and Joseph felt that love. Joseph's commitment marks the second year in a row that the Orange targeted a point guard, went all out to grab him, and were able to land their guy.
The commitment continues Syracuse's run of strong recruiting, grabbing elite prospects year in and year out. The Orange have found a strong balance between the one or two year college prospects and the three to four year program guy. Joseph fits more into the latter, and could be running the Syracuse offense for years to come.
Joseph is a multi-faceted point guard who can score as well as get his teammates involved. He is most successful attacking the rim, where he is a strong finisher. He fits in well with the Syracuse offensive system, as his strength is off the pick and roll.
From there, the four star point guard can either take it to the hole or pull up for a jumper. Joseph is a smooth athlete who looks the part. Bringing him in with the ability to backup Tyler Ennis for a year (assuming Ennis does not leave early) is the ideal situation. It allows him to contribute right away without having to speed up his development.
Syracuse's backcourt already has a lot of talent, with players like Ennis, Mike Gbinije, Ron Patterson, and Trevor Cooney. But the missing link is another point guard to go along with Ennis. Syracuse fans will have to wait a year for Joseph to get on campus. But when he does, he and Ennis have the potential to form one of the best point guard tandems in the country.
The Orange are not done in 2014 despite having two talented players in the mix. Five star shooting guard Isaiah Whitehead now becomes the primary target. A class with McCullough, Whitehead, and Joseph would be one of the best in the country and continue to establish Syracuse as one of the best recruiting programs in college basketball.
For now, the commitment is a dream come true for Joseph and mission accomplished for the Orange.