Summit Auto Group Best of the Week: It can be no one other than Elijah Hughes, who declared he was turning pro. During an SU season which had far too many ups and downs, Hughes was the constant standard of excellence, leading the Orange by averaging 19.0 points per game, but also putting up 4.9 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game. Quite often Hughes would carry the SU attack and he also made 81.3 percent of his free throws, which means he could be quite ready for the pros.
SOS Rewind and Archive: Transfers have often made a huge impact for SU hoops. Take Jason Cippola, who came from Tallahassee Community College in 1995 and immediately emerged as one of the key players in John Wallace’s supporting cast. All told, Cippola put up 7.7 points per game, but that included the shot that sent the NCAA Sweet 16 game with Georgia into an overtime the Orange eventually won on the way to the NCAA championship game. He then brushed with fame while working as a Teamster on the set of “The Sopranos” – true story.
AFLAC Trivia Tidbit: So where did Elijah Hughes come from? A long, twisted journey that began in New York City, where he attended Beacon High School and then John F. Kennedy Catholic. Then he went to South Kent Prep, and finally was at East Carolina, where he played 25 games as a freshman. Still, that amount of activity was not enough to keep Hughes there, so he went to Syracuse, where he sat out as a redshirt before becoming a starter as a sophomore in 2018-19. A year later, he was one of the best players in the ACC.
Upstate Medical University Community Corner: Like they do each April, Jim and Juli Boeheim will co-host the Basket Ball to raise money for their charitable foundation. Only with a twist. Instead of a lavish event at the Turning Stone, this time it will be a virtual event taking place at the Boeheims’ home, with all of the usual SU basketball-related guests that would usually appear in person and in tuxedos instead appearing via their computers. It also will serve as a telethon of sorts, with entertainment segments and other bits of fun.
U.S. Army Weekly Recap: Elijah Hughes made it official 11 days after SU’s basketball season ended, announcing on March 21 that he would forego his remaining year of eligibility and enter the NBA Draft process. It wasn’t a big surprise, but it did take away the player who led the Orange in scoring this season. At 22, Hughes would be older than many of the players also seeking professional glory, but he would have the advantage of having improved his game throughout his SU career and a maturity that could help him on various draft boards.