Syracuse Basketball: What to Expect from 2013 Recruit Chinonso Obokoh

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Syracuse Basketball: What to Expect from 2013 Recruit Chinonso Obokoh
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The Syracuse Orange secured its second recruit for the class of 2013, as 6'10" high school senior Chinonso Obokoh committed to Jim Boeheim's program.

Chinonso, a standout for Bishop Kearney in Rochester, N.Y., officially committed to Syracuse Monday, according to the Syracuse Post-Standard. He'll join combo guard Tyler Ennis in the class of 2013.

The Nigeria native plays AAU hoops for Albany City Rocks, and is poised to be a defensive threat as a collegiate player. But exactly what kind of impact can we expect in 2013-14 season?

 

Offensive Outlook

The one word that's commonly used to describe Obokoh's offensive skills is "raw ." Game film shows that his ball-handling, post-up and shooting skills are still in the early developmental stages, and he doesn't yet have a dangerous go-to move. 

Unless Syracuse bigs DaJuan Coleman and Rakeem Christmas leave early, Obokoh's limited offensive repertoire won't be problematic during his freshman season. He'll be called upon more as an energy reserve and defensive specialist.

Just because he's limited from a ball-skills standpoint doesn't mean he's lost on the offensive end. He already shows a willingness and ability to find the open space, flash to the high post, set screens and roll to the hoop. Obokoh's best offensive weapon could potentially be his offensive rebounding. 

As a freshman, he won't be featured in the Orange offense much at all. Most of his points will come on the fast breaks, dunks, or from rebounds.

The more he improves in his senior year of high school and next summer, the better chance he has of seeing substantial playing time in 2013-14.

 

Defensive Prowess

Obokoh's initial contributions for Syracuse will be on defense, where his length, mobility and athleticism will help him defend almost any power forward or center. He'll be an active presence as an on-ball defender and weak-side defender.

Assuming that he'll put on at least another 15 pounds before the fall of 2013, Obokoh could have a Rakeem-Christmas type defensive impact in his freshman season: nothing flashy, mostly staying home in the paint, but successfully filling a role while the featured players rest.

ESPN's official college hoops recruiting profile looks favorably on Obokoh's physical tools, and projects him to adjust defensively much sooner than offensively:

Obokoh's physical tools are the basis for his value. He's an excellent athlete at the power forward spot and has the size and length necessary to move over to the center position if necessary. He's got good feet and mobility for the frontcourt. He changes ends well, covers the court in run and jump situations, and protects the rim with his shot-blocking ability from a wide radius.

 

The Bottom Line

Before you get too excited about a 6'10" recruit, let's remember that Obokoh is a 3-star recruit on most scouting reports and isn't highly ranked by any of the major scouting outlets. But the physical tools are there.

As a freshman, expect Obokoh to chip in anywhere from five to 15 minutes per game, grabbing three to five boards and scoring no more than five points. Matching Rakeem Christmas' freshman campaign should be a goal of his.

 

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