The Spring Game kicks off today, so it’s time for The Fizz’s annual two-deep depth chart (here’s how last year’s roster looked). Team Fizz each filled out his own positions based on who they think should be starting, and who should be second string for SU this fall. Each player received two points for a starting vote and one point for second string.
There were a couple of tight races, plenty of no brainers, and a few head scratchers.
Category 1: Mark these down in pen
Alec Lemon and Marcus Sales ran away from the competition as starting wide outs, there is no better option than Ryan Nassib at QB, and Mackey MacPherson, Zack Chibane and Justin Pugh were voted as unanimous starters on the offensive line.
Deon Goggins and Brandon Sharpe coasted to starting spots at defensive end, while Eric Crume is locked in at defensive tackle. All but one of The Fizz staffers has Marquis Spruill slotted as middle linebacker. Shamarko Thomas took unanimous honors at safety.
Category 2: Too close to call
There were a couple of tight races, the closest being at tight end. Incoming freshman Ron “Sugar Bear” Thompson gave Beckett Wales a run for his money at the second starting position. Wales edged Thompson by one point to snag the starting role. Kanell and Hoffman sided with Sugar Bear, Plavin and I went with Wales, Fitz was undecided between the two, and Moskowitz threw a curve ball out there saying Louie Addazio will get the starting nod. The Fizz sees the tight end position being a wide-open race.
The second closest race on offense was the backup to Nassib. The dynamic Ashton Broyld is getting reps this spring, and got love from Team Fizz to edge out John Kinder in a 3.5-2.5 vote. The half votes come from Kevin Fitzgerald, who had Broyld and Kinder on an equal level. AB has been turning heads early in spring practice. Lets see if he can keep it up through the Spring Game and summer.
On defense the competition was tougher. The biggest battle was between Dan Vaughn and Cam Lynch at strong side linebacker. Vaughn, the redshirt senior, squeaked out a 10-8 victory over the talented sophomore. The Fizz believes that Vaughn’s experience and leadership ability gives him the nod early, but look out for Lynch. The Peach State product played well when given opportunities last season and we think he has more upside than DV.
As for the closest second string role, Brandon Reddish barley got by Ritchy Desir for at nickelback. Desir may be the defense’s swiss army knife, placed all over the field by Team Fizz. Hoffman has Desir starting at free safety, while Fitz has Ritchy playing safety as well. We think he’ll have a huge impact at corner/safety and punt returns. Watch out for Desir, he’ll find his way on the field and make plays.
Category 3: Are you serious?
Time to roast some Fizzsters on questionable picks. Jake Moskowitz might be the only man in America not to have Spruill as SU’s middle linebacker. Mosk took Dyshawn Davis in the middle, and Lewellyn Coker starting on the weak side. Jake, as mentioned above, also has Addazio starting in Marrone’s two tight end system.
Craig Hoffman is in love with the young Florida DB’s. Hoff has freshman Julian Whigham at second-string corner and Desir taking over as starting free safety. Hoff believes speed kills. JW and RD both have wheels and are playmakers in the secondary.
Andrew Kanell was the only member of Team Fizz to have wider receiver Kyle Foster in the two-deep roster. Foster was primarily a special teams player last season.
Alex Plavin and I both had freshman James Washington as a second string defensive end. Washington is considered one of the most talented recruits Doug Marrone brought in this season. While it’s still uncertain if Washington will be rushing the quarterback from line or as an OLB, The Fizz believes he will be on the field in obvious pass rushing situations.
The Fizz believes in the future, and has five players from the this winter’s recruiting class on the two-deep. Myles Davis, Ashton Broyld, Zian Jones, and Markus Pierce-Brewster all received honors.
Davis is in as the starting fullback even though he hasn’t played much at that position. Myles was an outside linebacker for Milford Academy the last two seasons. MD is a monster at 6’2’’ and 235 lbs and will be the lead blocker for SU.
Ashton Broyld could play all over the field this season but The Fizz loves him at QB. Syracuse has lacked a dynamic playmaker in recent years and we believe Broyld is a type of player that can give defensive coordinators fits to game plan against.
The Fizz Depth Chart puts some players in places you may not expect. Check it out, agree/disagree and let the debating begin!
Posted: Dave Van Moffaert