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Feeding Frenzy: Top 3 Penn State Commits Syracuse Should Reach Out To

Will South Jersey’s Brandon Bell make an official visit to SU? The Orange have an offer out.

Press of Atlantic City

The NCAA slammed Penn State with a $60 million dollar fine, a four-year postseason ban, and a significant loss in scholarships in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky scandal. This has led to the assumption the Nittany Lions will be gutted of talent over the next few months. Recruits with decent options will have little interest in not being able to play in a bowl game until their senior season. Current players have been granted blanket permission to transfer to any school without having to sit out a year. Also, the NCAA is allowing other schools to go over the 85 scholarship limit if adding PSU transfers this summer, as long as they dock themselves that same number of scholarships next year.

Andy Staples of SI.com writes, “Penn State will be comparable to Indiana or another low-level Big Ten program and will recruit like one of those programs. The best players in Pennsylvania will go elsewhere. Expect Ohio State, Michigan and Notre Dame to scoop up many of the top recruits in the state. “

The Freeh report released last week dropped a hammer on Joe Paterno’s legacy, but now the attention shifts to the future of the program.

Kirk Herbstreit discussed the challenge for Bill O’Brien on ESPN Radio:

“It’s going to  be very difficult for a program to try to bring recruits into a  program that doesn’t have a chance at the postseason,  a chance at a championship.  Think about it: that’s for four years. You’re moving forward five years from now, trying to build it back up.”

Herbstreit argued it could be up to a decade before Penn State even becomes relevant again in wins, conference championships and bowl games.

As competitors line up at the doorstep of PSU’s recruits, will Syracuse have a chance at any of them? Penn State has 12 current commits for the Class of ’13. Here’s a look at three possible candidates who might be intrigued by the Orange.

  • Brandon Bell: MLB, 6’1″ 224 lbs. Mays Landing, New Jersey

Bell includes Rutgers in his top schools, but SU has sent him an offer. Rivals ranks him as the 36th overall inside linebacker in the nation and gives him three stars. Bell has said that he would like to be close to home. His skill level and athleticism have been lauded, but he’s still a tad undersized compared to some enormous LB recruits in the Big 10. Much of the ACC and Big East sent offers his way. He has yet to comment on where his commitment stands. The New Jersey native spoke about Syracuse earlier in his recruiting process back in April:

 “Syracuse definitely is coming up a little bit. I’m still trying to plan a visit out there.”

  • Ross Douglas: CB, 5’10″ 180 lbs. Avon, Ohio
A four-star talent, Douglas has already de-committed from Penn State and has gotten an offer from the Orange. His top choices are Big 10 powers like Michigan, Michigan State, and Ohio State. It’s a long shot since the Midwest product says his only upcoming visit he has scheduled is for Madison. But Syracuse has at least recruited him, and the interest from Ebenezer Ogundeko and commitment by Texas’ Zach Allen shows elite players are looking at the Hill. The secondary could use some major help like Douglas, and he would be a cornerstone as “Ross Island” at the Dome. He says a number of coaches have already contacted him after the PSU penalties. Wonder if one of those is from the SU staff?

“There have been about eight coaches that have contacted me since I decommitted. The only visit besides Nebraska last week that my family has set in stone is this Wisconsin visit. I’ll be open (to more visits), I just don’t know when I will have time. Maybe I’ll have to take official visits. We’ll see.”

  • Curtis Cothran: DE, 6’5″ 225 lbs. Newton, Pennsylvania

Cothran also remains quiet after Monday’s sanctions. He has also received an offer sheet from Syracuse. The 54th ranked DE in the nation, Cothran could see plenty of playing time in Orange. Ogundeko would be a huge centerpiece of the defensive end corps. But should E.O. commit elsewhere, Cothran could be a strong replacement. He has offers from Maryland and Rutgers as well.

These three players all have offers on the table from Syracuse, and have obviously had contact with the Orange coaching staff at some point. Weighing SU is no longer crazy for a Penn State recruit. You will play all four years in the ACC. You’re joining forces with a young bunch of players who want to put their stamp on college football. The football facilities are improving. And you’ll be able to play for a bowl game or ACC championship the moment you step on campus. Penn State players are free to commit anywhere without penalty, so at the very least SU should be making a few phone calls.

Posted: Brendan Glasheen


29 Comments on this Post

  1. like the stories you all do, but can you do something about the adds the are at the side of the page. kind of annoying have a repeating cycle of ads that you cant pause or mute

  2. Russell MacEachern

    hey DA would be nice but remember when Schiano left RUs class decimated?we hardly got a sniff…be nice to snag one or two but most indications say we’ll benefit least…I tend to agree….hope Im mistaken..concentrate on EO,AO and Laray and take baby steps…working alright so far!!

  3. stumpycuse

    “hey DA would be nice but remember when Schiano left RUs class decimated?we hardly got a sniff…”

    The biggest differences were 1) Schiano left with a +/- 1 week until Signing Day; so if a player had already committed to Rutgers there wasn’t much time to revisit other schools. 2) Credit Kyle Flood with keeping that class intact. Rutgers was smart to keep as much of their staff together as they could, instead of having a wholesale change of coaches and assistants.

    More importantly though, when it comes to the class of 2013, comparing the major schools in the region (Boston College, UConn, Pitt, Rutgers, Maryland) two of them will be in a crappy conference in 2013, the rest will be competing for an Conference Championship, a chance at the BCS championship, or a shot at the Orange Bowl.

    That is something that neither Rutgers of UConn can provide.

    Also, speculating further, the fact that the Big Ten did not expel PSU seems to me that they have no intention of expanding any further (save for ND)…so I highly doubt you will see any current Big East teams in the B1G any time soon.

  4. Would like to see some OL’s be picked up.

  5. OrangeCrush27

    Is there any interest from any current PSU players?

  6. An hour after this was posted, Ross Douglas committed to Michigan.

  7. what about that Jones kid from rochester? didn’t he go to PSU. why not talk to him and see if he wants to transfer.

  8. nevermind he went to ND

  9. Too bad about Douglas. He was one I was really hoping for. Good article though.

  10. Russell MacEachern

    @Stumpy,neither do anyone in the ACC except one or two southern schools …you think BC or us are gonna see an Orange Bowl soon?…(VT.FlaSt.Clemson)…rest mostly OBE…lets not get highbrow yet….

  11. Norma Stitz

    What about possible transfers and not just commits? That is where SU was in on some of those older players.

  12. Russell MacEachern

    RE if he could hold it together and learn to live with Locksley with the recruits Lock’s is pulling has something going down at MD….now if we can continue on our recent trajectory and get EO and a few more stud’s in this and next years class we’ll have something to watch out for…go “Cuse”

  13. Cuse don't luse

    I like the articles here but over the past week I feel like their has been little relevance to Syracuse football lets be honest are we shocked a guy with penn state Wisconsin Nebraska and Michigan didnt pick orange? No it makes sense but we need target the Marcus Coleman’s and Harold brantleys who aren’t necasarily bad adds just adds we are making or trying to make that go un noticed these penn state kids are some of theist hyped players right now as a program we need to look past these penn state kids and use that situation as a decoy because we just aren’t goin to land Ross instead we use it as a jump on Larry smith also we understand the importance with ebenezer ogundeke but for a while this could have been ebenezer fizz instead let’s find those Marcus colemans and dkntez fords who won’t wow ur recruiting rank but have a chip on their shoulders to prove themselves

  14. Dixie Recht

    Akeel Lynch.

  15. Russell MacEachern

    @Norma,a little early yet..in a day or two they’ll digest it and maybe see a little movement…I think we have a shot at one or two!!

  16. Russell MacEachern

    Cuse dont lose has the right idea w/o getting carried away in fantasy…winning team’s are stocked with just that type of player….just good football players..not mega-hyped primadonna’s..

  17. Thanks for the read guys. I think @Cuse Dont Lose makes a strong point, but it doesn’t hurt to speculate. We are gonna look into transfers and guys who have yet to decide their commitments who have gotten offers from both PennState and SU. There are so many different scenarios, and I think SU should make a push especially considering EO is no guarantee

  18. CuseOnly

    Not really a chance that SU “poaches” any Penn State players. Don’t forget the fact that HCDM and Bill O’Brien are very good friends and have vacationed together. Along with the fact that their wives were college roommates.

    I don’t see DM calling O’Brien and saying “hey Bill…can I steal a few of your players, of course that is if you don’t mind…”

  19. BKLNORNG

    Cuseonly, while this may be true the players that have decided firmly that they want to transfer might be given a positive impression of Marrone and Syracuse from O’Brien.

    I also think O’Brien understands that everyone has to try or fall behind and that its not personal.

  20. bigdip

    @Dixie ……AKeel Lynch! WTF…..even Jarron Jones was going there, at one point! Sandusky helped ruin a real dynasty.. not a Vick like “Dynasty” , but a dynasty that actually produced. Didnt S.U. lose a 4star DE to PSU… a year or two b4, Ishaq W?

  21. i just heard O’Brien say on mike and mike that Marrone has called him to let him know that Cuse will recruit any player that calls Cuse about transfering.

  22. Marrone is a class act and the Sportscaster on 1260am had a survey on whether or not HCDM should be fired after this season if he does not produce.

    Lindsley who is the host of this show needs to stop the negative BS that persists at SU. Curtis Dukes would have attended SU if it weren;t for the negitivity of the GROB tenure.. Get a life Lindsley

  23. stumpycuse

    “Russell MacEachern says:
    July 24, 2012 at 5:48 pm
    @Stumpy,neither do anyone in the ACC except one or two southern schools …you think BC or us are gonna see an Orange Bowl soon?…(VT.FlaSt.Clemson)…rest mostly OBE…lets not get highbrow yet….”

    Thank you for telling me how the 2013-2017 seasons will end…you just saved me countless number of hours watching games.

    As I accurately stated, in 2013 Boston College, Syracuse, Pitt, and Maryland will be competing for a conference championship, BCS championship, or the Orange Bowl. I cannot predict how the season will end or who will be in contention for a bowl spot, but they will certainly be competing for those bowls which is much more than the Penn State, UConn, or Rutgers can offer at this time.

  24. Russell MacEachern

    @Lou R,your absolutely right..ESpin has been notoriously anti-Cuse..anti Eastern football…Cowsh-t is another!!@stumpy..correct competing albeit short of horse’s….UConn and RU are also untill 2014 for BCS dream …RU…with horses..!!UConn along w/us???TBD!!!keep it real Stumpy or apply for work @ESpin…they love spinner’s..

  25. Russell MacEachern

    Fella’s …sorry but I hate this anti-Eastern slant it seem’s so many have bought into…I’m not going to denigrate any Eastern school to promote my own agenda..outside of our game’s w/fellow BE schools I’ll root for them!!!…thanx fella’s!!….yes we play football in the Northeast..go “Cuse”

  26. Syracuse is still regarded as a major step down in quality in comparison to Penn State and other major BT schools like Michigan. If a kid comes to Syracuse it will be a matter of convenience a LUCK. Not competitive enhancement

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