Syracuse Basketball Target Lonnie Walker Is Taking His Talents To South Beach

The Syracuse basketball team missed out on a premiere player for their recruiting class. What’s next for Syracuse and who are they targeting next?

The Syracuse basketball program struck out on a possible recruit this week.

Five-star wing Lonnie Walker, one of the premier shooting guards in the 2017 class, will join the University of Miami next season.

The 6-5 Walker, who attends Reading Senior High School in Reading, Pa., said via Twitter on Wednesday: “I’m officially a Cane.”

Walker chose Miami over Arizona, Kentucky, Syracuse and Villanova.

His decision is somewhat surprising. Many recruiting experts predicted that he would end up at Arizona.

The 247Sports Crystal Ball, in fact, had those Wildcats the overwhelming favorite for Walker’s services, at 82 percent. The Hurricanes, meanwhile, checked in at 6 percent.

Walker is a huge get for head coach Joseph Larranaga’s squad. According to an ESPN.com report, he is Miami’s highest-ranked commitment since the Web site began its recruiting database back in 2007. Walker is also the third ESPN 100 prospect in the Hurricanes’ 2017 class.

As for the Orange, while it’s never enjoyable to lose out on a top-notch target, this isn’t a

substantial blow. Particularly since virtually no one expected Walker to sign with Syracuse.

He had planned to check out the SU campus for his official visit this past weekend but didn’t wind up going to Central New York, 247Sports reported on Nov. 13.

When asked if he would reschedule his visit to Syracuse, Walker told 247Sports, “I’m not sure.” That probably ended any hopes the Orange would land him for the 2017-18 season.

The 247Sports Composite lists Walker as the No. 21 player in the country, the No. 3 shooting guard, and the No. 2 recruit in the state of Pennsylvania.

ESPN pegs him at No. 19 nationally, the No. 4 shooting guard, and the No. 1 prospect in Pennsylvania.

Despite Walker passing on the Orange, SU still has a lot of activity surrounding its own 2017 class. On Nov. 12, Syracuse received its first commitment, Oshae Brissett, a 6-9 forward who attends Athlete Institute Prep in Mono, Ontario.

Quade Green, a five-star point guard out of Philadelphia, will reveal his school of choice on Nov. 19. His finalists are Duke, Kentucky, Syracuse, Temple and Villanova.

Two days later, on Nov. 21, 6-10 power forward/center Bourama Sidibe will announce his college decision. Sidibe, from the St. Benedict’s Preparatory School in Newark, N.J., made an official visit to Syracuse this past weekend, taking in the Orange’s season-opening win over Colgate on Nov. 11. While watching the game, he sat with Green.

Sidibe has also visited Oklahoma State and Texas Tech. Other schools recruiting him include Arizona State, Arkansas, Maryland and Seton Hall. He is ranked No. 89 by 247Sports, and comes in at No. 153 according to the 247Sports Composite.

Want encouraging? The 247Sports Crystal Ball has Syracuse at 100 percent for Sidibe.

Last but not least, Billy Preston recently took to Twitter, saying he will announce sometime this week. The 6-10 power forward, a unanimous top 20 recruit, attends the powerhouse program Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, Va.

The Los Angeles native visited the Syracuse campus last month; SU head coach Jim Boeheim also met with Preston at Oak Hill in early October.

Besides the Orange, he is reportedly considering several other schools, including Indiana, Kansas and Southern California. The 247Sports Crystal Ball has the Jayhawks as the clear front-runner, at 88 percent.

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