The Orange announced 27 players have signed letters of intent to play at Syracuse this fall.
Today was the first day players were eligible to sign and the period will remain open until April 1. Syracuse received letters from 13 defensive players and 12 offensive players, with 11 coming from New York. The signings seemed to accomplish many of SU coach Doug Marrone’s recruiting goals.
“Our goal going into this season with this recruiting class, which I think is important, is speed first,” Marrone said. “That’s the number one thing I wanted to bring into our program. The second thing that we were looking for was we wanted a bigger team. We wanted to get more range in the athletes that we were bringing in. We think we accomplished that with the height and weight of a lot of the players we’ve brought in.”
One of the reasons for Syracuse’s successful recruiting season was the success of the 2010 team. The Orange went 8-5 overall including a dramatic 36-34 win over Kansas State in the inaugural Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium.
“The last week of recruiting, four to five of our players who were committed, pretty much got a full-court press on them to de-commit from staffs from the Big Ten, the ACC, and also from the Big East,” Marrone said. “I’d be naïve to think that it didn’t help us with the momentum heading into the recruiting season and I think at the end of the day, the character of the player held that commitment. But I’m sure the win in the Bowl Game gave teams less ammunition to attack our program.”
Originally, Syracuse had received 28 verbal commitments, but Nassau Community College receiver DeFarrel Davis was not among the players announced. Davis was Syracuse’s highest-rated recruit according to Scout.com, which rated him a four-star player on a scale of five.
Davis is a 6-foot-2, 185-pound receiver originally from Melvindale, Mich. Last season, Davis recorded 19 catches for 325 yards and two touchdowns.
When asked if Davis would eventually join the team, Marrone wouldn’t answer the question directly, but hinted that Davis wouldn’t be joining Syracuse.
“The one kid we’re waiting on, I don’t think a lot of people do know about him, except for the staff,” Marrone said. “I’m not going to comment on the player because I don’t want to jeopardize getting that player at this time.”
The Orange also lost out on Kevin McReynolds who committed to UCLA. McReynolds, who attended Washington’s St. John’s College, had narrowed his choices to Syracuse, Kansas State, Mississippi State and the Bruins.
The defensive tackle was rated three stars by Scout.com and No. 24 at his position.
That leaves Syracuse with one available scholarship.
“We’ll know within 10 days – it could be closer, I don’t know, but I know it’s a two-week window,” Marrone said. “When we sign that player, that will give us 28 total for this year, which will give our overall program 84, which means we have one more scholarship left but we’re not allowed to give that out because of initial signees.”
Among the highlights of Syracuse’s incoming class on the offensive side are quarterbacks Ashton Broyld and Terrel Hunt.
“Terrel Hunt’s athletic ability speaks for itself,” said Greg Adkins, Syracuse’s recruiting coordinator. “He is a starting guard on a great basketball team down in New York City. He brings a lot to the table. He has great speed and leaping ability. He is also a tough guy and we like that.”
Adkins had equal praise for Broyld.
“Ashton Broyld from Rochester is the same type of player,” Adkins said. “Anyone who saw him play in the Dome (in the high school state championship) can tell that he has a lot of talent. They are both great players. We expect them to be quarterbacks. If they can’t be, we will move them to some other place.”
Defensively, Syracuse can look forward to seeing defensive linebacker Cameron Lynch.
“Cameron Lynch, you just have to turn the film on,” Adkins said. “Whether he’s 5’10 or 6’2” we offered him a scholarship because, like Coach said, our staff evaluated him and thought he’d help our football team.”
Here is the entire recruiting class:
Wesley Cheng is the Editor in Chief for The Juice Online.