Schiano Leaves Rutgers: Recruiting Fallout Begins, Syracuse’s Golden Opportunity

(Update: 4:04p. ESPN’s Dave Hooker has published a piece that cites specific recruits Rutgers is now in danger of losing, including one with Syracuse ties.

“Since the news (3-star WR – Don Bosco Prep) Leonte Caroo has also seen his phone ringing off the hook with places like Illinois, Miami and Syracuse already reaching out.” 

The piece listed a group of players that are fielding calls and texts from other schools looking to swoop in. Don Bosco Prep head coach Dave Toal said Darius Hamilton and Caroo were “real concerned. They want some stability and they want some answers.”  Three-star offensive tackle Ryan Brodie may have UConn and West Virginia resurface in the race. Four-star offensive line commit Chris Muller said Michigan, South Carolina and Vanderbilt have reached out to him since the news broke.

Toal had some daunting words for Rutgers:

“I’m very concerned about the situation. It has a tremendous impact. I don’t think there’s ever a good time, but this might be, possibly the worst time it could happen to be honest with you.”

CBS Sports recruiting analyst Tom Lemming says, “It will absolutely destroy recruiting this close to signing day.”

St. Peter’s head coach Rich Hansen: “I’m just having a hard time wrapping my head around the timing of it because I don’t think the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a signing day next Wednesday.” 

Mike Giacone (TE – St. Peter’s) is now reconsidering his options and re-connected with Connecticut, Boston College and Wisconsin.

Caroo, who was contacted by SU today, will take an official visit to Miami.

J.J. Denmon, a four-star recruit from Pennsylvania, said he is sticking with Rutgers.

* * *

Greg “Crazy Eyes” Schiano had two boxes to check before he left Rutgers: Lots of money and writing on the wall. Done and done. By jumping to the Buccaneers, he no doubt will earn a major payday. He also likely sees an ever-expanding chasm to cross as Rutgers may be left behind in the conference realignment.

The ACC wanted UConn before Boston College stepped in to block it, and forced the invite to Pitt. But should the conference expand again (and Notre Dame came aboard), you’d have to imagine the Huskies and their powerful basketball teams would once again get the nod over RU. Rutgers’ Big 10 potential has always been theorized, although the tectonic plates may have stabilized around college football for the time being. RU may be stuck in a bad Big East for the foreseeable future. Three of its biggest rivals are headed to better conferences (Syracuse, Pitt and West Virginia), and a stack of cash was staring back at those Crazy Eyes. Wouldn’t you leave, too?

Which brings us to those three rivals, most importantly SU. Doug Marrone has not fared well against the Scarlet Knights on the recruiting trail in New Jersey. The Garden State used to be a fertile area in the 80s and 90s for Mac and Coach P. But the combination of Schiano’s success and SU’s plummet turned the tables in the state. Syracuse’s only ’12 Jersey commit is DT Marcus Coleman, who was only the 39th best recruit in the state.

Schiano has built his entire program around keeping great talent within NJ’s borders. One year ago, RB Savon Huggins‘ commitment was the first time Rutgers had landed the top player in the state. But dozens of highly rated Jersey recruits consider RU every year. This season Schiano’s been battling Florida, Miami and Auburn for 5-star DE Darius Hamilton from Ramsey (Don Bosco Prep). Four-star ATH/QB Devin Fuller (Westwood, NJ) has been interested in Rutgers along with Nebraska, Arizona and Notre Dame. Three-star offensive lineman Derrick Nelson from Washington DC was an SU target, but verbally committed to Rutgers in July.

One of SU’s biggest targets, Brooklyn’s Wayne Morgan, was considering Rutgers earlier. But it looks now like it’s down to SU, UConn and maybe a late push from Penn State. At one point Syracuse was recruiting against RU for DE/OLB Deaysean Rippy from McKeesport Rocks, PA. But it seems like he has narrowed it down to West Virginia, Pitt, Arizona and Colorado. Rangy TE Ryan Morris came out of Rutgers country (Barnegat HS) and visited Syracuse, but committed to Purdue over the summer.

The timing of this departure couldn’t be worse for Rutgers. Just six days until National Signing Day, and you’d have to imagine more than a few 18-year-olds who thought they were committing to play for a coach they built a relationship with just had their worlds turned upside down. Marrone’s staff has a reputation of avoiding negative recruiting. But the stability and family atmosphere SU sells might have a stronger pull today for student-athletes scared by the change at RU. Either way, Rutgers needs to move fast to replace Ol’ Crazy Eyes, and the new guy needs to move even faster to keep those commits in place.

Posted: D.A.


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  1. Frank says:

    Nice! I was reading NJ paper article about Schiano leaving and there definitely was a 50 50 split of fans saying good bye in a not so friendly way.

  2. Jimmy says:

    Interesting. I gotta believe someone is in Marrone’s ear saying “make the calls Doug, now is our time” just have to believe Wheatley or Adkins is making that push to Doug. We need it!

  3. Jimmy says:

    Someone should be in Marrone’s ear right now saying “make the calls Doug, it will only help us!” Someone has to. Doug has to be ruthless to steal recruits for once!

  4. orangeskin says:

    Hopefully HCDM and the staff are calling all the recruits. This is an opening that SU has to use to its advantage. If they don’t HCDM may pay with his job. There’s no guarantee that SU will get a commit from Morgan now that Penn State is in the picture. SU needs to get aggressive with the Rutgers commits and sell them on SU’s stability v. the atmosphere of uncertainty, both coach and conference wise at Rutgers. HCDM needs to bag some of the “Leave it to Beaver” recruiting methodology and get aggressive. His future at SU may depend on it.

  5. BostonJay says:

    Yes! The End of Rutgirls. And it was only a modest period of success anyway. Time for Dougie to reclaim New Jersey.

  6. Terry says:

    HCDM better reclaim NJ for talent or he might end up on Schiano’s staff in Tampa Bay in 2013.

  7. Frank C says:

    What the hell is Tampa Bay thinking? Schiano will never cut it as pro-coach.. his players will laugh at his rah-rah style, like they did to Coach mac when he went to the Pats. I mean, his record was only 68W with 67 loses in a shitty BE conference… he’ll be gone in 2 yrs!!!

  8. TIM TEBOW says:

    The question is why would any of these kids who have chances to go to good programs come to su?

    I mean your pitch can’t be that they stink so the kid can play right away.

    Marrone should stick to finding D3 kids who otherwise wouldn’t have the opportunity to play D1 football.

  9. John says:

    Toal said he had spoken to Hamilton, who was scheduled to announce his college decision Tuesday, and Carroo, who committed to Rutgers in August over several other scholarship offers. Since the news broke, Carroo has also seen his phone ringing off the hook with places like Illinois, Syracuse and Miami already reaching out.

    Carroo is a pretty good 3/4 star receiver. Looks like Marrone has been calling him!

  10. RUrevenge says:

    If the SU recruiting team can not exact revenge for Ray Rice and Courtney Green (SU signees that RU stole after trigger happy Gross fired Coach P) than it is time to fire Gross for putting SU in the sad state it is in.
    Under Coach P, SU football easily out recruited RU,UConn and BC, now watch all these schools out maneuver SU for the RU players that jump off the RU sinking ship!

  11. RUrevenge says:

    I really hope my comments do not come true….

    but it is sad to see how far SU football has fallen, when it can’t easily land top kids from NY and NJ and continually loses recruiting battles to RU, UConn, BC and Florida International?????

    That didn’t happen on Jake’s watch…..
    wake up trustees, this mess is all Gross’ doing. Big time football programs would have sent him packing years ago.

    The move to the ACC should be good for $$ and football recruiting, but everyone is looking for results not excuses…..

  12. Terry says:

    Gross is not the problem, HCDM is. If HCDM didn’t have a few good asst. coaches who can recruit he’d be worse off now. This class is his best so far(if they don’t non-verbal). But this class is rated at the bottom of the BE also. So big deal!! HCDM’s fan base is blind to this fact. His fans need to see that this experiment if only average at best. And can not go on after this year!!! If he goes below .500. So Dr Gross you will have a decision to make won’t you!!!

  13. Statesman1 says:

    You guys are forgetting how pathetic the last years were under P. he was not getting top talent his last several years from nj or anywhere else. Having said that Marone needs to pick up the talent level but I suspect that is hardly news to him.

  14. where legends play says:

    All this HCDM is the problem is bull. Just look at Rutgers, thy stuck with Schiano after having a way worse start to his time at Rutgers than HCDM has so far. we cant just fire a head coach every time there is a problem. I say we stick by HCDM for as long as it takes ad it might be 3 more years to get to where we want to be but the whining that goes on here needs to end. It makes SU fans sound so pathetic. BTW I dont like how Gross handled his first hire in grob but other than that he has done a lot for ALL of the other athletic teams.

    p.s Bring back #44 its our biggest recruiting tool!!

  15. Russell MacEachern says:

    Hey Dougie(Hc),you still have 2 or 3 schollys left,if you dont outrecruit Rutgers this year….when will you?My bet is RU still has a Top 2 or 3 class(BE)this year and top 40 over all (and better than the Cuse)55th?any takers?Good luck hanging on to Wayne Morgan W/Pasqualooney on the job!btw Guarantee RUs new coach will keep N.J. Scarlet…I suggest the “Cuse”develop some personality.before your golden oppurtunity RU was headed for a top 15 class w/out the ACC!!I cant wait to hear you guys next ex”cuse”!<<ps @Legends,your right but in this age of instant gratification the base will shout you down!…sad state of affairs.

  16. Russell MacEachern says:

    @OrangeFizz,in the days after the initial shock of Schiano,s surprise jump to the NFL it appears they will hang on to the great majority of their highly rated class with some fast moving by Tim Pernetti ,the assistant coaches,…and the efforts of the kids themselves determined not to drift apart and allow the vultures too pick them apart like a disorganised herd of Buffalo….these are the type of kids that make me proud to be a Rutgers fan..maybe you can work for and develop ur own “Ray Rice” and not use anothers misfortune to get one the (easy way)..go UTR “HCDM” get those 2stars guys and develop them…it can be done w/a few 3/4 stars nixed in…see Rutgers 2005/2006<>btw..if you gtve the “Dougie”2/3 more years you may see light at the end of the tunnel,these things dont happen in a “NY minute”

  17. vito says:

    Hey russel… wow dude you are a loser lol. There is more to life than this bro. Nutso.

  18. Russell MacEachern says:

    @Vito,go to school bro and learn to spell,Caroo skips Miami visit confirms along with Giacone to RU….are greasers still as dumb as you?I grew up in North Ward of Newark and spent 2 years in Nam,,,ur as dumb as ive seen…hugs+kisses.btw your a “Cuse” fan and im stupid?

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