SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Syracuse’s Taurean Thompson, who had a solid freshman season for the Orange, is taking a leave of absence from the university, coach Jim Boeheim announced Monday in a brief statement.
“My understanding is he wants to go to school closer to home due to some family health issues,” Boeheim said.
Thompson, a 6-foot-9 forward from New York City, played in all 34 of the Orange’s games in 2016-17, starting 21 times. He averaged 9.2 points and 3.8 rebounds in playing 17.9 minutes a game and shot 54.6 percent from the field, often showing a deft touch around the basket.
Thompson, 20, led the Orange in scoring for the first time in his career with 18 points, eight rebounds and three blocks at Virginia Tech in January and notched his first double-double — 18 points, 12 rebounds — at Georgia Tech in February. He finished the year with 30 points and 16 rebounds in two NIT games on a team that finished 19-15.