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Syracuse basketball five-star recruit Elliot Cadeau, the nation’s No. 1 point guard in the 2024 class per multiple recruiting services, announced his verbal commitment to fellow Atlantic Coast Conference team North Carolina on Wednesday evening.
The 6-foot-1 Cadeau, a top-10 national prospect in the junior cycle, was offered a scholarship by the Orange coaching staff in November of 2021. His final six consisted of Syracuse basketball, UNC, Louisville, Texas Tech, Texas and Kansas.
The ‘Cuse pursued Elliot Cadeau for more than a year. Throughout his recruiting process, he said in numerous interviews that Syracuse basketball was among the suitors recruiting him the hardest, and that Orange coaches were in regular communication with him.
While the ‘Cuse missing out on this top-flight talent stings, it’s not surprising. In recent days, leading up to Cadeau’s commitment announcement, the Tar Heels were receiving analyst buzz in his recruitment on the 247Sports Web site, Rivals.com and the On3 Web site.
North Carolina, led by second-year head coach Hubert Davis, made the NCAA Tournament championship game this past spring, where the Tar Heels fell to Kansas. Entering the 2022-23 season, UNC was the No. 1 team in the preseason AP top-25 poll.
The Tar Heels endured a bit of a slump between late November and early December, dropping out of the AP top-25 poll altogether. However, UNC is now on a four-game winning streak. In the most recent AP ballot released earlier this week, North Carolina checked in at No. 25.
As far as I can tell, Syracuse basketball coaches made Elliot Cadeau one of their top priorities in the 2024 class. Cadeau does have the option to reclassify to the 2023 cycle, according to media reports.
It’s disappointing that the Orange has missed out on Cadeau, particularly since he’s not only a supremely gifted basketball player, but also because he’s a terrific young man off of the court. That being said, you can’t blame him for choosing North Carolina, a blue-blood program that won its most recent national title in 2017.
We reported on Monday that businessman and top SU booster Adam Weitsman had offered a three-year, seven-figure name, image and likeness deal to Cadeau. Personally, I commend Adam for his efforts here.
Cadeau, a junior at the juggernaut Link Academy in Branson, Mo., had taken official visits to UNC, Texas Tech and Louisville. He had recently said that he was eyeing a possible official visit to the Hill, but that never materialized.
Without getting him on the ‘Cuse campus for a visit, I felt it would prove extremely challenging for Syracuse basketball coaches to land a commitment from Cadeau.
After securing a promising six-member 2022 class, the Orange is still in search of its first commitment in either the 2023 or the 2024 cycle. If we’re talking about the junior class, Syracuse basketball has offered a wide range of 2024 four-star and five-star players.
At this juncture, I would keep an eye out for four-star guard Jalil Bethea, four-star shooting guard Elijah Moore and four-star wing Damarius Owens. All three took official visits to Central New York in the fall.
Additionally, in recent days, the Orange offered fast-rising small forward Marcus Adams Jr., who suits up on the west coast.
I’m wishing all the success in the world to Elliot Cadeau. He’s a fine young man and will shine in Chapel Hill, N.C.