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Syracuse Basketball: Orange's Best-Ever Player at Each Position

Josh SchochAnalyst IIIJanuary 13, 2017

Syracuse Basketball: Orange's Best-Ever Player at Each Position

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    Syracuse's basketball program is one of the most prestigious in the nation, and it has remained a powerhouse in college basketball for years.

    Over the decades of success, Syracuse has had one great player after another, and if the best of the best were all on one team, the Orange would undoubtedly go undefeated.

    Let's take a look at the best players by position from the team's lengthy history.

Point Guard: Sherman Douglas (1985-89)

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    Sherman Douglas is arguably the best dual-threat point guard to play at the collegiate level.

    Douglas' 2,060 points and 235 steals (third in team history) became secondary stats after he set the D-I record for career assists with 960 (since broken).

    Simply put, Douglas could do it all, carrying the team himself or dishing it out to teammates. He is the perfect guy to run an offense, and he was the best floor general in team history by a mile.

Shooting Guard: Dave Bing (1963-66)

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    Some fans will be surprised not to see Gerry McNamara starting at shooting guard, but I have him as the team's sixth man.

    Dave Bing was one of the most athletic and talented shooting guards in the history of the game. While he might not have the knack for theatrics and clutch shots that McNamara did, he was an all-around player.

    Averaging 24.8 points and 10.3 rebounds per game over his Syracuse career, Bing broke all kinds of records during his playing days. He also dished out 6.6 assists in the only season when the stat was recorded.

    Bing had three triple-doubles during that one season alone, which is one-third of the triple-doubles in team history (per Orange Hoops).

Small Forward: Carmelo Anthony (2003)

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    Easily the most talented player in Syracuse history, Carmelo Anthony's one season was the best in school history.

    Melo led Syracuse to its only NCAA tournament championship, averaging 22.2 points and 10 rebounds per game.

    Anthony led the team in points (20), rebounds (10) and assists (seven) in the title game, and he turned in arguably the best single-game performance in school history on the biggest stage, taking the crown.

Power Forward: Derrick Coleman (1986-90)

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    The 6'10" forward from Detroit became a legend at Syracuse, averaging a double-double over his four years on the hill.

    Coleman could do it all, playing inside, shooting from range and dominating the game. He complemented his 15.0 points and 10.8 rebounds per game with 2.3 assists, proving that he could pass as well.

    Coleman would have been a beast if he were surrounded by the guys on the list, and it'd be nice to see him play with Douglas just one more time.

Center: Bill Smith (1968-71)

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    Bill Smith is another giant, standing at 6'11" and 220 pounds.

    Smith utilized his incredible height, averaging 12.9 rebounds per game as he sucked them up like a vacuum. He was also a threat on offense, using his excellent post moves to drop 20.7 points per game.

    Smith's numbers are truly remarkable, and it's rare to see centers like him today.

Sixth Man: Gerry McNamara (2002-06)

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    As promised, Gerry McNamara makes the squad as the sixth man.

    McNamara was the most clutch player in school history, exemplified by his 2006 Big East tournament, when he hit buzzer-beater after buzzer-beater.

    As Carmelo Anthony's overshadowed teammate, McNamara is not always associated with the 2003 national championship team, but he played a crucial role, averaging 13.3 points, 4.3 assists and 2.3 rebounds per game as a freshman.

    The G-Man was one of the best, and it just didn't feel right leaving him off of a list like this.

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