Paul VI (Va.) 2015 guard Franklin Howard has committed to play his college basketball for head coach Jim Boeheim at Syracuse University, the senior-to-be announced on Comcast SportsNet’s SportsTalk Live with Brian Mitchell on Monday night.
Howard is ranked as the 58th-best player in the country from the Class of 2015, according to Rivals.com, and is rated as a four-star recruit. He chose Syracuse over finalists that include Maryland, Georgetown, Virginia, NC State, and Ohio State.
You can watch video of his announcement in the embedded video player above.
“It doesn’t get any better than Boeheim,” Howard told Mitchell after affixing a Syracuse hat to his head and announcing his commitment. “He’s top five coaches of all-time. It’s a top five program all-time. They’ve got great guard development at Syracuse, so I think I’ll fit in very well there.”
The 6-5, 185-pound local product sat out his junior season at Paul VI after undergoing surgery to repair a torn ligament in his knee last summer. He has been cleared by doctors to participate in basketball activities and expects to return to the court at the end of the month when the summer amateur circuit begins.
Howard becomes the third member of Syracuse’s 2015 class, joining New Jersey native Malachi Richardson and New York native Tyler Lydon.
He also becomes the next in a long line of players from the area to commit to Syracuse, including most recently Baltimore native C.J. Fair and Hyattsville, Md., native Jerami Grant. One of the program’s most notable alums, Carmelo Anthony, attended high school at local Towson Catholic (Md.).
Syracuse assistant Adrian “Red” Autry was integral to Howard’s recruitment, as he has been in the Orange’s pursuit of other players from the region around the nation’s capital.
Autry played for Syracuse from 1990-94. At the conclusion of his playing career, he became an assistant at Paul VI and with local AAU powerhouse Team Takeover, the team with which Howard now plays on the amateur circuit.
Autry was hired as an assistant at Syracuse in 2011 after a stint on staff at Virginia Tech.
Syracuse is losing a handful of talent to the NBA Draft following the 2013-14 season. Among those confirmed to be entering the draft are guard Tyler Ennis, who Howard says helped to influence his decision to attend Syracuse.
The program will be entering its third season in the ACC by the time Howard steps on campus and having been raised in a region where that conference is prominent, the Paul VI guard says he’s ready to play in the conference he grew up watching.
“It’s definitely exciting because the ACC is probably the No. 1 conference in the country right now,” he said. “And I know I grew up with a lot of guys who are playing in the ACC right now so I’m definitely excited to be on the court with them.”