Men's Basketball

Forward Taurean Thompson has reportedly withdrawn from Syracuse

Jessica Sheldon | Staff Photographer

As a freshman forward last season, Thompson averaged 9.2 points and 3.8 rebounds per game.

UPDATED: Aug. 28, 2017 at 2:38 p.m.

Forward Taurean Thompson has reportedly withdrawn from Syracuse and “likely won’t be back,” according to Donna Ditota of Syracuse.com.

“We have been informed that Taurean is taking a leave of absence from Syracuse University,” SU head coach Jim Boeheim said in a statement to Syracuse.com. “My understanding is he wants to go to school closer to home due to some family health issues.”

Summer-long rumors speculated something like this would happen, Ditota reported. She wrote that Thompson did not attend summer classes, “unusual though not unprecedented.” That Thompson was rumored to maybe transfer from SU or pursue a professional career. That Thompson has not responded to messages and invitations from teammates over the summer.

Thompson’s two high school coaches, Bob Hurley at St. Anthony (New Jersey) High School and Jason Smith at Brewster (New Hampshire) Academy, both told The Daily Orange that they had not heard from him in months.

Thompson attended a closing ceremony for St. Anthony in May, Hurley said, and at that time everything seemed “normal. School and everything seemed good.”

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 Jessica Sheldon | Staff Photographer

Last season, Thompson averaged 9.2 points and 3.8 rebounds per game. He shot 54.6 percent from the field while playing 17.9 minutes per game. He scored well, but struggled with foul trouble and learning the Orange’s 2-3 zone defense. Thompson rotated in at center.

Now, at that position, Syracuse has only Paschal Chukwu, the 7-foot-2 Providence, Rhode Island transfer who missed most of last season after eye surgery, and Bourama Sidibe, an incoming freshman.

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