Syracuse down to 10 players after Moustapha Diagne exits, can begin penalty

ByJeff Borzello ESPN logo
Friday, August 21, 2015

Syracuseis in position to begin its NCAA-issued scholarship reduction a year earlier than expected after former ESPN 100 prospectMoustapha Diagnehas decided to play at a junior college, leaving the Orange with just 10scholarship players.

The school issued a statement Friday that Diagne, a 6-foot-8 power forward from Pope John XXIII High School in New Jersey, "has decided to enroll in a two-year college." He was ranked No. 58 in the ESPN 100.

Only nine of Syracuse's 10 scholarship players are eligible to play, as Providence transfer Paschal Chukwu will sit out the upcoming season before having three years of eligibility with the Orange.

As a result, Syracuse could now begin its NCAA-issued scholarship reduction if the university decides to do so.

In March, as part of the punishment handed down after an eight-year investigation into the basketball program, the Orange were docked three scholarships per year for a four-year period. That period was expected to begin for the 2016-17 season, as the Orange already had 13 players on scholarship for the upcoming season.

However, after the transfers of Ron Patterson and B.J. Johnson, the NBA early-entry departure of Chris McCullough and now Diagne's decision, coach Jim Boeheim is down to 10 players even with Chukwu entering the fold.

Syracuse is also down to 10 projected scholarship players moving forward, as rising seniors Trevor Cooney and Michael Gbinije will be replaced next season by 2016 commitsTyus Battle (No. 27 in the ESPN 100) and Matthew Moyer (No. 50).

Related Video