May 2, 2013, 12:51 PM EDT
Syracuse has emerged as a potential destination for Memphis transfer Antonio Barton, according to a report from Syracuse.com.
Barton, the younger brother of Will Barton, spent three years playing for the Tigers, but after averaging 8.2 points in just under 25 minutes as a freshman, Barton has seen his minutes get cut significantly in the last two seasons. Injuries have played a role in that, as Barton missed much of last season. But with Joe Jackson continuing to develop, and with the emergence of Chris Crawford and the addition of Geron Johnson, there just wasn’t many minutes available for Barton to play.
Barton is on track to graduate this June, which would allow him to play immediately wherever he ends up. And while Barton has reportedly had more than two dozen schools reach out to him, Syracuse seems like it would be a good fit for both sides.
The 6-foot-2 Barton likely wouldn’t be a starter for the Orange, not with heralded recruit Tyler Ennis entering the program. But he would be the only other point guard on the roster, as sophomore Trevor Cooney, Duke transfer Michael Gbinije and freshman Ron Patterson are all off-guards. A veteran presence could help ease the transition from high school ball to the ACC for Ennis, and it would be nice for head coach Jim Boeheim to avoid having to play his back court out of position to give Ennis a rest.
There’s also a connection to the program: Barton played AAU ball with fellow Baltimore native CJ Fair, and Fair played with Will at Brewster Academy.
“He likes Syracuse’s system and their style of play,’’ Barton’s mother told Mike Waters, although he has yet to visit the school as he is focusing on graduating from Memphis on time. “It’s just a matter of getting to Syracuse and sitting down with Coach Boeheim and the Syracuse staff and seeing what they expect of him.’’
Would Barton be OK with once again accepting a role as a back-up?
You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.
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