Five star wing Malachi Richardson gave Syracuse their second commitment in the 2015 class. His high school coach at Trenton Catholic, Fred Falchi, said Richardson's meeting with Jim Boeheim after his visit was what sealed the deal.
"About a week or two ago, he went up to Syracuse when Syracuse played Indiana," coach Falchi said. "Afterwards, they sat down and they talked about how they were going to use Malachi. Different things like that. He and mom were just really impressed with everything that they said. Then he made his choice.
"Syracuse is a great program. What are they, number two in the country? But you get down to choices to the schools he was going to go to, and personally I don't' think he could wrong. If you look at Syracuse, he's long and they like guys with length especially guards. He just seems like he would fit into what they want to do."
One of the things that stands out about Richardson is his work ethic. When you combine that with the natural gifts that he has, the result is a tremendous basketball player.
"He's from the neighborhood," coach Falchi said. "He's been coming to our games since he was in the third grade. He has a tremendous work habit even from a young age. You'd always see him and his mom doing something.
"From drills to ball handling to moves to shooting and in the YMCA gyms around here. He's just a hard worker and that's why he's going to Syracuse. You have the talent and you have the work habit and you have the grades."
Maybe the most impressive part of Richardson's game is his outside shooting.
"Yes, a very strong shooter," coach Falchi said. "Over the summer, at least four or five days a week, he's in the gym with his mom. He shoots three or four hundred shots from six or seven different spots. So he can really stroke it. He's tall at about 6-foot-6. He seems like he's still growing. He's still a young kid so he's going to get stronger. He handles the ball like a point guard.
"He understands the game like a point guard too. He can really do it all. A knock him to me is that he's probably a little too unselfish. He should probably try to do a little bit more but he's always trying to get everybody involved. We'll see this year. He's one of the best players in our state and Syracuse got a kid that can really play."
Richardson is built similarly to a recent Syracuse guard that had a lot of success with the Orange.
"We played against Michael Carter-Williams," coach Falchi said. "Probably they're similar players, but Malachi is a lot further advanced with his outside shooting. They have similar type of builds. The length, that's what Boeheim likes. He's long at 6-6. For the type of ball and the game that they play, he's perfect. He can run the floor, he can pass it, he can stroke it. He's just a complete player."
While Syracuse is getting a very talented player on the court, they are getting just as strong a person off of it.
"He's just a tremendous kid," coach Falchi said. "A very humble kid. In our area, he's a city kid. He might be a little bit sheltered. I grew up in the era where you went outside and you played. Now you kind of can't do that when you're younger. But he's a great student. He goes in school and he's never in trouble.
"He never has his cell phone out. A lot of times you get kids who are good players and people cater to him. But we really don't. He doesn't do anything wrong. He's still a kid, don't get me wrong. But he's been no problem when he's been here. Just a very nice, jumble kid."