Freshman Jerami Grant has been trust into a much larger role with the absence of senior forward James Southerland.
In the four games since Southerland was ruled ineligible, Grant has picked up the majority of the minutes and made the most of it. In the Orange’s 75-71 overtime loss to Villanova on Saturday, Grant turned in another solid performance, with 12 points and 5 rebounds off the bench in 27 minutes.
“I’ve just been pleased with my confidence and being able to come out and play more minutes on the court and help my team out,” Grant said to The Juice Online. “I feel like everything’s falling into place.”
SU needed a spark, trailing 32-26 at half, and turned to Grant, who started the second half over fellow freshman DaJuan Coleman. He started the half with a pair of free throws and then put-back a CJ Fair miss. On the next possession, Grant drained a 3-pointer.
Grant’s personal 7-0 run gave Syracuse its first lead of the game at 33-32.
“Jerami had a really good game,” Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim said. “He was huge to start the second half.”
Grant has had to mature quickly without Southerland available. In the past four games, he’s averaged 29 minutes, 10 points and 5.5 rebounds. In the three previous Big East games before that, he had only played a combined 24 minutes.
He would’ve played even more on Saturday, but Grant fouled with just over five minutes left, after he got caught in the air on a pump fake from Darrun Hilliard.
“I wish I would’ve had that back,” Grant said. “He got me up in the air and leaned into me.”
It was Syracuse’s first loss without Southerland.
“Everybody loses. It’s a tough game to lose, but we’ve only lost two games so far,” Grant said. “Most people lost a lot more than this.”
- Recruiting Roundup: Syracuse offers Lamont Wade, Ben Mason, Tyshon Fogg - February 10, 2016
- Recruiting Roundup: Elite 2017 prospect Hamidou Diallo to visit Syracuse - February 9, 2016
- Recruiting Roundup: Syracuse extends offer to Donovan Jeter - February 8, 2016
- Bailey: Syracuse fans ‘should be happy’ with incoming 2016 football class - February 5, 2016
- Recruiting Roundup: Syracuse offers Joel Honigford, Jairus Grissom, Izayah Green-May, JaVont’e Richardson - February 5, 2016
- Recruiting Roundup: Scout ranks Syracuse 43rd in average class stars - February 4, 2016
- Instant Juice: Syracuse adds impressive class on 2016 National Signing Day - February 3, 2016
- Recruiting Roundup: DeVaughn Cooper to choose between Syracuse, Arizona, Arizona State - February 3, 2016
- Recruiting Roundup: Syracuse loses out on Stewart Reese, Josh White - February 2, 2016
- Frank Howard dazzles as Syracuse rallies to defeat Georgia Tech - February 1, 2016