Despite earning a No. 1 seed in this year's NCAA tournament, Syracuse now faces an uphill battle in their quest for a national title.
The Orange (31-2) announced on their website Tuesday that sophomore center Fab Melo will not participate in the tournament due to an "eligibility issue."
"Given University policy and federal student privacy laws, no further details can be provided at this time," the site said.
Melo was held out of three games earlier this season while he resolved an academic issue. Syracuse went 2-1 during that absence.
The 7-foot center has averaged 7.8 points, 5.8 rebounds and 2.9 blocks for the Orange who spent a good portion of the season ranked No. 1 despite multiple off-court distractions.
Syracuse, given the top seed in the East Region, opens play Thursday at 3:10 p.m. in Pittsburgh against UNC-Asheville with a possible third-round matchup against Jared Sullinger and Ohio State.