Joseph ready to take over

Kaleb Joseph will step into the Syracuse program as a true freshman who is the favorite to land the starting point guard job with Tyler Ennis' departure. He discusses that and more inside.

Most would assume that a basketball player's favorite time of year is during the season. But it's not that way for Kaleb Joseph.

Joseph, a Syracuse commit and graduating high-school senior, enjoys these early spring months the most, after basketball has ended. Why? Because it allows him to think.

"It gives me a lot of time to get ready for the next season coming up," Joseph said. "It gives me time to reflect on this season; how everything went, how everything should have been, and just getting time to pick apart my game."

He had good things to look back on. After a junior year where he helped his high school, Cushing Academy, win the New England Prep School Athletic Conference championship, he became the top scoring option and senior leader as he lead his team to a repeat title. But he also says that he wasn't completely happy with his effort throughout the season.

"I think one thing I could have done better was my focus," Joseph said. " I think after I committed, I kind of didn't care about high school basketball as much because I didn't really have anything to prove.

"But that wasn't true. It wasn't about proving myself: It was just about getting better."

Joseph said that starting the season with that mindset was a disservice to his teammates. But he realized that they deserved better, and the fact that this was his last year of high school basketball made it that much more important.

But with his high school career now behind him, Joseph is looking forward to joining Syracuse next year. He hated that the team did not go deeper into the NCAA Tournament, and he wishes he could have played this season.

"If I was on that team, it would make me work really hard," Joseph said. "But I'm excited to go into that environment to play with a bunch of guys that are ready to prove themselves next year."

The loss of Tyler Ennis was big, but Joseph said it did not make him doubt his decision to come to S.U. With Jim Boeheim saying plans to use a point-guard-by-committee attack next season, it may limit the amount of time Joseph will play. But that's not really what he's worried about.

"He (Boeheim) calls the shots," Joseph said. "It's not my job to have any thoughts on that. If one of us is that much better than everyone else, than that is the guy that should be relied on."

He says that he hopes to be that guy, and he may even have a little bit of jitters too.

"I think anybody going into a situation like this would be nervous because it's unknown," Joseph said. "I have never played college basketball, so I am going to be a little nervous.

"But I have worked hard for it and prepared for it, and I think I am ready."

Joseph says he is going to forgo his senior graduation to begin summer course at Syracuse. He will begin on May 19th.

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