Syracuse Forward Taurean Thompson Reportedly Takes Leave of Absence
SYRACUSE, N.Y. – Sophomore forward Taurean Thompson did not return to campus for the start of the fall semester today and is not expected to suit up for the Orange in 2017-18. Syracuse.com’s Donna Ditota first reported the story.
“We have been informed that Taurean is taking a leave of absence from Syracuse University,” Boeheim said. “My understanding is he wants to go to school closer to home due to some family health issues.”
After a strong freshman campaign, some speculated about the New York City native’s future with the team. According to Ditota, Thompson had no contact with his Syracuse teammates all summer. Even his high school coach at Brewster Academy, Jason Smith, had not heard from him in months. Now, it appears he will be moving on and moving closer to home.
According to one source, Thompson has been reported on the campus of Seton Hall University in South Orange, New Jersey, and could announce his intent to transfer within the next week.
The 6-foot-9 forward averaged 9.2 points and 3.8 rebounds while playing just under 18 minutes per game. He also shot an impressive 54.6 percent from the field on the year.
Despite being a bit of a liability in the 2-3 zone, Thompson’s ability to stretch the floor and draw defenses mad him an impact scorer on last year’s roster.
Without Thompson, Jim Boeheim returns just one of his top seven scorers from last year in Tyus Battle, who averaged 11.3 points per game. The Orange will now look to redshirt-freshman Matthew Moyer, redshirt-Junior Paschal Chukwu and true-freshman Bourama Sidibe to fill in the gap. But, it could be a bit of an experiment to start the season, as all three have combined to play just seven games in a Syracuse uniform.
Coming into the season, Syracuse was projected to finish eighth in the Atlantic Coast Conference. That task just became much taller.