Syracuse Basketball: Ranking the 5 Greatest Points Guards in Orange's History
There's nothing like a good point guard in basketball, and the Syracuse Orange have had quite a few.
Point guards control the offense and are like second coaches. The best point guards can lead their teams to titles with just a little bit of help because they have such a big impact on the game.
Let's take a look at the best floor generals in Syracuse basketball history.
This list will be broken up into four categories, each having different weights. The categories are as follows:
- Scoring ability (30 points)
- Passing ability (30 points)
- Defense (20 points)
- Longevity (20 points)
5. Jonny Flynn (86/100)
Passing Ability: 28/30
Jonny Flynn's NBA career might not have lived up to expectations, but in college, he was an elite passer. Averaging 5.3 and 6.7 assists per game in his two seasons, respectively, Flynn improved quickly and was one of the top floor generals in the nation.
Scoring Ability: 28/30
Flynn wasn't just a pretty passer, he was a triple-threat scorer as well, as he was able to drive, hit pull-up jumpers or launch bombs. His 16.6 points per game helped him lead the Orange for his two seasons.
Flynn was one of the toughest defenders in school history, and he was able to contain his man all night without fouling, tallying more steals than fouls in his career.
Missing his last two years really hurts Flynn, but he barely makes this list at No. 5 in spite of that.
4. Dwayne "Pearl" Washington (91/100)
Passing Ability: 29/30
Dwayne "Pearl" Washington was a flashy passer who is arguably the second-best in team history. He came in and averaged 6.2 assists per game as a frosh, and if he had returned for his senior season, he could have conceivably dished out eight or more per contest.
Scoring Ability: 29/30
Washington could have been a 2,000-point scorer if he had returned for his last year of eligibility. He was 516 points away from 2K and had scored 554 in his junior season and shot 52.4 percent from the floor over the course of his career.
Washington was electric on offense, but he was perhaps even better on defense. He snagged 220 steals in just three seasons and could have hit 300 if he had returned.
Washington is punished in this category for leaving the program early. I wanted to restrict those who left early, and this category certainly held Washington back from potentially being the top point guard in school history.
3. Jason Hart (94/100)
Passing Ability: 28/30
Jason Hart might honestly have been one of the best passers in program history despite averaging just 5.4 assists per game in his career. He didn't rack up ridiculous numbers, but he was a smart player and rarely made errant passes.
Scoring Ability: 25/30
If only Hart was as good of a scorer as he was a passer...He still averaged 11.4 points per game despite being a pure point guard, but Hart was only a good scorer—not a great one.
Yeah, Hart was that good. It's tough to get 105 percent in a category, but he was the best defender on this list and he deserves it.
Four-year starter, 132 games played, 131 games started...you get the picture.
2. Dave Bing (95/100)
Passing Ability: 27/30
Dave Bing was more of a combo guard than a pure point guard, but there's no denying that he was creative and effective with his passing. In his only year when assists were recorded, Bing finished the year with 6.6 per game, and he could have had more if he wasn't asked to also score 28.4 points per contest.
Scoring Ability: 30/30
I mentioned that Bing scored 28.4 points per game in his senior season, but that's just the tip of the iceberg. In his three varsity seasons, he averaged 24.8 points per game on 49.5 percent shooting from the field, leading the team all three years. Keep in mind that this was also before the three-point line was adopted in college hoops.
Bing was a lockdown defender thanks to his athleticism. There are no statistics that show how good of a defender Bing was (besides his mere 2.2 fouls per game his senior year), but he was a freakish athlete. Bing grabbed 10.3 rebounds per game in his career despite being just 6'3" and 180 pounds.
Bing played and started in 76 games in his three varsity seasons, consistently leading the Orange to success. Can't blame him for playing as much as possible given the day and age.
1. Sherman Douglas (96/100)
Passing Ability: 30/30
There is no better passer in Syracuse basketball history than Sherman Douglas. He is the program's all-time leading passer with 960 career assists and 8.1 per game as a starter. His alley-oop passes were simply extraordinary, and he looked like he was just toying with his defenders in the '80s.
Scoring Ability: 29/30
It's tough to give Douglas less than a perfect 30 in this category after he finished his career with 2,060 points, but his freshman year leaves a blemish on his impressive resume. His 5.4 points per game that year weren't really his fault because he didn't play much, but I'm still docking him a single point because of it.
At 6'0" and 160 pounds, Douglas wasn't exactly an intimidating presence. However, his quick hands made him a pesky defender, and he racked up 235 steals in his career compared to just 231 fouls.
Douglas rode the bench his freshman season as a backup, but he took the team to new heights in his final three seasons, as the Orange made their first trip to the national championship game.