Syracuse Basketball: Greatest Long-Range Shooters in Orange History

Daniel O'Brien@@DanielO_BRFeatured ColumnistJuly 18, 2012

Syracuse Basketball: Greatest Long-Range Shooters in Orange History

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    Some of the best moments in Syracuse Orange basketball history weren't possible without prolific outside shooters.

    Carmelo Anthony was the centerpiece of the 2003 national championship, but the trophy wasn't winnable without Gerry McNamara.

    The 1987 Final Four run was built on the sharpshooting of Greg Monroe, and the 1995-96 run was fueled by the three-point prowess of Marius Janulis and Todd Burgan.

    But who exactly are the best long-range shooters in the program's history? Here's our rundown of Syracuse's all-time greatest deep threats.

10. Brandon Triche, 2009-2013

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    Brandon Triche has yet to write the last chapter of his Syracuse career, but he's climbing up the three-point charts in Orange history.

    The hometown guard is on pace to make 165 three-pointers, which would boost him into the top-10 on Syracuse's all-time list. Triche has a nice fundamental shooting form, with no wasted motion in his shot.

    He's proven to be a solid all-around player for Jim Boeheim, providing scoring, facilitating and rebounding as a combo-guard. The Orange will rely on Triche to hit more big shots this season and step up as a leader, on and off the floor. 

9. Todd Burgan, 1994-98

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    A key role player on the 1995-96 NCAA runner-up squad, 6'7" small forward Todd Burgan gave Syracuse a great mix of scoring and rebounding throughout his career.

    Long-distance shooting wasn't Burgan's only offensive asset, but he converted a consistent percentage of three-pointers for the Orange.

    In his senior year, the lefty's outside shooting helped him lead the team in scoring. He would finish up his Syracuse career with 1,560 points—over a third of those points were from beyond the arc.

8. Greg Monroe, 1983-87

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    One of the best complementary shooters in Orange history, Greg Monroe became a sniper for Syracuse from the outside. The Rochester native was a key role player in one of the best seasons in the program's history.

    The three-point line wasn't implemented until his senior year (1986-87), so we don't know exactly what his career totals and percentages would've looked like.

    What we do know is Monroe was on fire from long range his senior season, helping spur the Orange all the way to the NCAA title game. He finished the season with a blistering 44 percent clip from behind the arc with 79 total triples.

7. Matt Roe, 1986-89

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    In his three years at Syracuse, Matt Roe emerged as one of the best three-point specialists in the Big East.

    He didn't see much playing time his freshman season, but over the next couple years, Roe became a starter for the Orange and a dead-eye from downtown.

    In his junior season, he rocked the Carrier Dome, hitting 47 percent of his threes en route to 83 total three-pointers.

    Roe's hot shooting at Syracuse and Maryland didn't land him a spot in the NBA, but he did carve out a brief career in the CBA.

6. DeMetris Nichols, 2003-2007

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    A 6'8" forward with a high release and a soft shooting touch, DeMetris Nichols was one of the best players in Syracuse's post-championship years.

    His freshman and sophomore seasons were rather underwhelming, but he blossomed his junior year, hitting 73 threes while registering 13 points and six rebounds per game.

    Nichols continued to excel in his senior year, a year in which the team struggled and needed his production. He made 100 threes, hitting 42 percent of his attempts, and he scored nearly 19 points per game.

    The 2006-07 All-Big East performer worked his way into the NBA, where he bounced around between four teams and spent significant time in the Developmental League.

5. Eric Devendorf, 2005-2009

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    Hailing from Bay City Michigan, the abundantly confident Eric Devendorf was an immediate-impact player when he arrived at Syracuse.

    He scored 12 points per game his freshman year and knocked down 50 threes in 2005-06. Devendorf shared the backcourt with senior Gerry McNamara as the Orange marched to the Big East title that spring.

    Devendorf's long-range shooting improved over the course of his career, as he became a more efficient perimeter scorer.

    As a senior, he nailed 82 threes at a 39 percent clip, and was second on the team in scoring. His professional career has consisted of stints in New Zealand, Australia, Turkey and the NBDL.

4. Marius Janulis, 1994-98

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    The only foreign-born player on this list, Marius Janulis brought his deft shooting stroke over from Lithuania in the mid-1990s.

    Janulis never averaged double-digit scoring for the Orange, but from his sophomore to senior year, he supplied extremely consistent outside shooting. He complemented John Wallace, Todd Burgan and Otis Hill on the 1995-96 Final Four run.

    Janulis is seventh on Syracuse's all-time three-point field goals list, but he has a higher career percentage (40 percent) than the top six shooters.

3. Preston Shumpert, 1998-2002

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    Preston Shumpert scored 1,907 points at Syracuse, with 747 of them coming from beyond the arc. His 249 three-point field goals were a program record (subsequently broken by Gerry McNamara).

    He wasn't fast or strong, but Shumpert was a fluid offensive player with a smooth shot. He broke out for 19.5 points per game his junior year and won the Big East Most Improved Player award.

    Shumpert's Syracuse career saw him rack up All Big-East First Team honors twice, earn a nomination for the John Wooden Award, and break a host of single-season and career records. He might be the most talented Syracuse player to never play in the NBA.

2. Andy Rautins, 2005-2010

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    It's tough to live up to the legend of Orange star Leo Rautins, but Andy Rautins made his father proud by becoming one of the best Syracuse guards of the 2000s.

    The Jamesville-DeWitt product wasn't a focal piece for the Orange his freshman or sophomore year, and he missed what would have been his junior year due to an ACL injury. But he would come back stronger than ever.

    In his final two years at Syracuse, Rautins became the best all-around guard on the team. He was a superb defender, an alert passer, and of course, an elite perimeter shooter.

    Rautins' 282 career threes is second on the Orange all-time charts, and his shooting prowess earned him a spot on the New York Knicks in 2010-11. He has since played for CB Lucentum Alicante in Spain.

1. Gerry McNamara, 2002-06

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    It's not even close: Gerry McNamara is easily the best long-range shooter in Syracuse history.

    With exactly 400 career threes, including some of the biggest shots the Carrier Dome crowd has ever seen, McNamara terrorized the Big East from 2002-2006.

    His six three-pointers in the first half of the 2003 NCAA title game helped vault Jim Boeheim to his first national championship. For an encore, he scored 43 points in a tournament game the next year, and then won back-to-back Big East tournaments in 2005 and 2006.

    A quick release and unlimited range helped the diminutive guard score over 2,000 points for the Orange.

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