(The Fizz’s Dave Van Moffaert has gained a reputation as one of the most tapped in sources for Syracuse football recruiting news. Over the next three weeks, DVM will regularly be posting his thoughts, predictions, rankings and buzz on how SU’s recruiting class takes shape. This is the first installment of “DVM’s Signing Day Scoop.” Thanks for reading.)
It’s crunch time for Doug Marrone and Syracuse football. There’s just under a month left until National Signing Day and SU needs to reel in a few more recruits to cap off the ’12 class. The Orange continues to find available scholarships since Darius Parson and Tyree Smallwood have both dropped Syracuse for various reasons. The number crunch SU once found itself in is no longer a problem and only 20 commitments are wrapped up to date. Who will land the last spots for the ’12 group?
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It appears SU is smartly looking at the defensive side of the ball, especially secondary and defensive linemen, a place it desperately needs help. Here’s The Fizz’s latest top 5 targets most likely land on the Hill next season.
- Wayne Morgan, DB (Erasmus Hall, Brooklyn)
Morgan is that NY product the Orange needs to keep in-state. Not only was the secondary putrid last season, but Syracuse needs to win as much top end New York talent as possible. It’s down to only two schools right now: UConn and SU. Losing him to the Huskies would be a big blow since Marrone has stated the recruiting grounds of New York City metro is a priority. Morgan is the biggest fish left in the Empire State and would mean an important Big Apple catch. Realignment can also be a huge factor in this recruiting battle. The Brooklyn product said the move to the ACC makes it more attractive, giving Syracuse the edge.
Chance of committing to SU: 65%
- Josh Glanton LB (Haines City HS, FL)
Parson was supposed to be a counterpunch to Boston College, but now another spot opens at linebacker. Glanton seems to be one SU is pursuing the hardest. His coach has told The Fizz it’s down to FIU, where he has a soft verbal, and Syracuse. The move to the ACC is a main reason why SU is still in this recruiting battle. Another reason: Academics.
“He likes not just the football program but also the academics. When you get a degree from Syracuse that means something. You know it is a private school, and the degree is a heavy piece of paper when you go floating that around.”
The Fizz gives the obvious classroom edge to the Orange over FIU. Playing in an AQ conference has to also look attractive for Josh. We have a gut feeling SU can swoop in and change the mind of Glanton.
Chance of committing to SU: 50%
- Josh Manley, DE (Milton High School, GA)
Even with the potential of Nassau Community College DE Bryan Johnson coming to SU, defensive end is still an area of need. Manley told The Fizz SU is in his top 4, and Georgia has suddenly become a hot bed for Orange recruiting. A positive for Syracuse is Manley’s family in New York. But the Orange is up against hefty competition with nearby Georgia Tech lurking. Manley wants to study engineering, and GT has one of the best programs in the country. Tech still scares us the most, and more schools are throwing late offers at him. We think the chances JM comes to the Hill are getting slimmer.
Chance of committing to SU: 30%
- Justin Thomason, DE (Eagles Landing Christian Academy, GA)
The Fizz talked to Thomason’s HC during the recruiting dead period, and he said JT was very interested in Syracuse. Justin’s top 5 boils down to SU, Vanderbilt, UNC, NC State and Western Kentucky. The Orange is battling with new ACC foes that hold the location edge over the Orange. But Syracuse is in desperate need for more defensive line help and will send the arsenal in to get Thomason. JT has the body type and athleticism of a Chandler Jones and would be a great replacement going forward. Getting either Manley or Thomason would be huge, but getting both would be gravy.
Chance of committing to SU: 30 %
- Dalton Crossan (North Sachem High School, NY)
Smallwood is gone and Parsons (RB/LB) is off the list as well, so the Orange could use another running back. The Fizz spotlighted Crossan in the fall and he is a touchdown waiting to happen. He has offers from small schools like Penn, Buffalo and Stony Brook. If SU comes hard there is a strong possibility he may end up in the Salt City. But Dalton is also a very good lacrosse player and may chose that path. Keep an eye on DC as Signing Day approaches. He reminds The Fizz a lot of Danny Woodhead; a scat back that posses good hands and could be killer on 3rd down.
Chance of committing to SU: 20%
Fizz-mas is inching closer. Check The Fizz daily for all the latest on all the Orange targets. The entire staff is tracking all of the potential targets for SU, and talking daily with coaches, players and scouts.
Posted: Dave Van Moffaert