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Syracuse Stargazing: Ogundeko Wants to Shine, Can He Do it on the Hill?

Don’t count Ebo out of the Orange mix just yet, he has his official this weekend to the Hill.

ESPN.com

Ebenezer Ogundeko wants to be a star. Who can blame the 6’4” 240 lb. 4-star defensive end? Ebo finished his senior season with nearly 80 tackles, led New York’s PSAL league with 17 sacks, and won Defensive Lineman of the Year. It’s no wonder why the highly recruited senior deserves the spotlight. Ogundeko tells The Fizz he wants to play at a school where he can shine, where his talents won’t be underappreciated. That’s why southern powerhouses Clemson and Florida top his list.

“It’s very important. People tailgating, people knowing your name everywhere you go. People want to take pictures with you and treat you like you are a superstar.”

The Tigers and Gators lead the pass-rushers’ list with less than a month until his decision. Ogundeko marveled at game day in Gainesville and Death Valley, and said the environment that suits him best will ultimately be the deciding factor. He wants a place where he can effectively grab the attention of fans and spectators and showcase his talents. Can he do that at Syracuse? Terrific question.

Let’s be honest, the football atmospheres at schools like Florida and Clemson blow SU out of the water. He’ll certainly receive more exposure on national title contenders. Just the way it goes. And even though Ogundeko will be making his official visit on The Hill this weekend, he’s only making sure eliminating SU was the right decision.

“I just want to know that I’m making the right choice of cutting Syracuse from my list or not.”

Time for Doug Marrone to pull out the big guns this weekend. No pressure or anything.

The Orange still has a small chance at a top 10 DE in the nation. Nothing is certain, Ogundeko’s list of top schools has changed more times over the last 6 months than Ryan Nassib’s career playbook. Back in June, Ogundeko tabbed Notre Dame as his favorite after visiting South Bend. Now, the Irish are nowhere to be found in the race. Arizona State was once high on Ebenezer’s list after an official visit back in mid-October. The Sun Devil appeal has apparently burned out. Maybe scheduling Syracuse as the last official visit could be the best thing for Marrone and company? At least the trip will be the freshest in his mind.

If his visit goes well this weekend, he admits he might bump SU back into the hunt.

“[Coach Anselmo] knows that once I come up to Syracuse, he thinks that I might have Syracuse as my leader, or in my top 3. So it’s all up to the visit.”

Anselmo has been recruiting Ogundeko for months, and this is a difficult decision with the amount of options someone like Ebenezer has. The Brooklyn native called it “a business.” Factors can’t be taken too personally, he admitted. Bottom line, it’s pretty simple. All the DE is focused on is hardware.

“[What’s important is] being on a winning team. When you’re winning, all that other stuff doesn’t matter to me. Winning and being successful.”

Make no mistake here, Syracuse isn’t the only school that can sell immediate playing time. Ogundeko is one of the most talented edge rushers in the country. He’s going to play as soon as he steps on a campus. He knows he”ll get significant snaps as a freshman even at Florida or a Clemson. He’ll be enrolling in college in January and will have an extra semester to familiarize himself with whatever system he’ll be in. Orange Nation will need a little help from the Cuse Clique that will also be on campus this weekend. In addition to Ogundeko, class of 2013 commits Zach Allen, Austin Wilson, Augustus Edwards, Tyler Provo and target Laray Smith will all be on The Hill as well.

Ogundeko will announce his decision January 4th at the Under-Armour All-America game. It’s less than 30 days away, but it could be a whole new ballgame for Ebo in the New Year. He wants to be a star, and SU fans have stars in their eyes.

Posted: Kevin Fitzgerald


36 Comments on this Post

  1. DA you said that he was named the Defensive player of the year. I pay attention to nycfootball.com from the Big Apple and I have rarely saw his named mentioned at all. Is this site not related to NYC HS FB at all or what goes??? Many “other” players were mentioned mainly Samuals of Erasmus was there alot. He looks good!! Or is it that EO’s team really was not good and not in the city’s limelight. That concerns me. Even if EO’s team sucked his 4 star light would still shine. Why no ink on nycfootball.com?? Just wondering?? Reading this article shows me EO likes the limelight too much. Might not be a “real” team player either!!

  2. @Terry; Reading this article shows me EO likes the limelight too much. Might not be a “real” team player either!!

    I thought that I would never ever agree with anything that Terry said,but I have to admit I was wrong and I agree with his last comment.

    @Kevin;

    Who’s to say that EO could even handle the notoriety here at Syracuse. It’s true that we all would like to see him come to Syracuse to play,it’s also true that he would be a big fish in a small pond here and would stick out like a sore thumb. Having said that one player doesn’t make a team. Could he handle the pressure the fans will bring when he doesn’t perform well? No matter what amount of stars are after a players name,if he isn’t a team player,we don’t need him. We all know if he chooses Florida or Clemson playing time will be at a minimum. If he chooses Syracuse a 4 year career and a road to the NFL would be immediate.

  3. Gee Ebo, you ever hear of Swight Freeney andChandler Jones? Guess what the football community outside of Syracuse was and is impressed with those “stars”. They became “stars in Syracuse and took their stardom to the next level successfully. You have friends at the university get a brain and join them. Stop acting like a petulant child in a candy store.

  4. OrangeCrush27

    Yeah i think Ishaq and Jarron Jones will still hurt more to have lost then it will if EO goes to Clemson or Florida.

    First off he will not get significant snaps as a freshman at either southern school. Way too much talent and depth his first couple years there. Especially when both are still recruiting more highly talented LB’s and DE’s. Best spot for playing time is at ‘Cuse.

    Def agree with Terry’s comment as well. Doesnt matter where you go. As long as you put up a good individual performance no matter how your team is playing you will always get noticed by fans and NFL scouts.

    My whole thing with EO is that he doesnt know what he wants. There will never be enough time to decide. He wants to play Edwards and other NYC teammates or he committs/decomitts/switches school at the yop of his list. I just think he has a better chance of rolling a dice with ‘Cuse, ND, Florida, ASU, Clemson, and Ole Miss on each side and whatever side comes up, he committs to…unless he wants to roll again.

  5. I believe that EO is very very confused young man. I also believe the reason for him changing his mind so often is that he seeks attention and loves to see his name in the papers all of the time.

    He knows that time is running out for him to make his mind up as to where to play. If he doesn’t make a decision soon he will find out the schools that he’s looking at has filled their allotment of recruits and won’t have any room for him to attend. He just might be headed to a(DII or DIII) school that none of us thought possible.

  6. I believe where ever EBO goes it will be a rude awakening.

  7. ND had a # crunch for scholarships and have bigger fish left on the board then EO. I hope EO comes to SU.“It’s very important. People tailgating, people knowing your name everywhere you go. People want to take pictures with you and treat you like you are a superstar.”- Starting at SU from day 1 be the quickest way right? He will have to sit at Clemson and UF.

  8. Did he really say he wanted to be a star and have people treat taking pictures with him and treating him like a super star? That is the problem with many of our young athletes……nothing wrong with wanting to be great…..but come on, autographs, pictures…celebrity status! I went to the Cuse with one of the greates players in the Cuse history…An NFL Hall of Famer and recently inducted into the College Hall, Art Monk. Never heard Art say he wanted to be a superstar and have people beg to take pictures with him…NEVER He just played…and performed. These Kids want the Glory…..before they have earned anything. Not saying he is not a good HS player, but I would like for him to produce on the field and earn some respect ….You want to be treated like a Super Star…..then play like one….behave like one….Earn some respect!

  9. OrangeCrush27

    That’s today’s media Dr. Bill. Totally agree with you. You dont see too many elite high school athletes stay humble. They need to make their college decisions live on television with 10 college hats in front of them and then they go to commercial break before they select.

    It’s a soap opera really.

    I say ‘Cuse has a 35% chance of snagging him

  10. Section 129 Smitty

    EO we want and need you and your are the next Freeney or Jones so come to SU with your boys from NYC and your days of playing on Sunday will await you.

  11. Hey EO, if all you care about is signing autographs getting treated like a star, go someplace else. Even if you ever make the NFL, 78% of players are broke within three years of retirement. So, your first priority in school should be getting a degree. Being a broke, washed up NFL nobody who has been concussed too many times to count doesn’t really pay too well. So if you want to make yourself marketable after football with a relavant degree, if you would like to grow up and learn some life skills, by all means, come to Syracuse. But if you want the star treatment, go to Clemson. With the maturity you are showing, you wouldn’t last at SU. Who’s been blowing smoke up your butt, you haven’t even played a down of big boy football.

  12. PLEASE_READ

    FIRST, this article (while probably written with the best intentions) makes this guy sound like an @ss. D.A. why not write the story with same facts in a way to support Dougie and rally the faithful? Second, readers don’t be dumb and please think for a hot second. This kid wants to be a “superstar” and be treated like one…you really think that’s any different from almost any other 4 or 5 star recruit ever? He’s 17 yrs old and due to his football ability (not IQ) he’s thrust into the media spotlight; give the kid a break. If you’ve read or witnessed anything about the program over the last three years you would know that DM is trying to bring in quality kids. So please pull the lemon out of your mouth, dry your eyes, and go put on your big boy pants because you have some supporting to do. We’ve got a chance to get a 4-star talent, defend our back yard, and get a kid with NFL dreams and maybe someday ability. SU Fans, SHUT YOUR MOUTHS, fall in line, and SUPPORT THE MISSION!

  13. CuseOnly

    This young man clearly doesn’t realize that there are already 7 defensive ends on Clemson’s team that were rated nearly the same or way above where he is rated. Not sure how many were redshirted but I am sure that only 2 start.

    Let him go there and sit if that is his decision.

    If he wants adulation having done nothing then we don’t need him.

    Marrone has said as a guy who knows and has been there. If you are good enough to be a pro then the NFL will find you no matter where you play. On TV or not they will find you.

    Talent alone will not make you a star. Talent, smarts, great coaching and work ethic will make you a star. I am not sure fans kissing you ass will get yo to the NFL but if that is the route he wants, let him go.

    I honestly hope he comes here and can become what he thinks he can be but I for one will not care one way or another from this point on.

  14. If this kid wants limelight coming to SU sorry to say the light now is dim. Hopefully with better coaching and more talented “team” players the light will once again shine very brightly!! SU needs players who want to be here honestly!!! BEAT WV!!!

  15. Thanks for reading guys. This piece was written by Kevi Fitzgerald as it states at the bottom of the post. Personally, I dont think Ebo is looking for the limelight any more than any HS senior. Every kid wants to feel like a big shot – we all did when we were that age. I think he’s a good kid – but @Please-Read, you have to understand, this is not a pep rally site. We dont demand that SU fans “fall in line and support the mission.” We’re all very opitmistic SU fans here at the Fizz, and we’re no different with Ebo. Love seeing a player of his caliber consider the Cuse. I think the piece was very positive toward Ebo.

  16. @PLEASE_READ;SU Fans, SHUT YOUR MOUTHS, fall in line, and SUPPORT THE MISSION!

    Who in Sams Hell are you to tell any of us that use this web page to shut up and fall in line to support the mission.

    We don’t take kindly to outsiders telling us to shut up. Your just another arrogant-son-of-a-pup.

    Please go to another web site and tell those people to do what you told us to do. It really took a lot of balls making that statement while crossing the line into plain stupidity.

  17. Russell MacEachern

    Fuhgettabout him,kids as fickle as hell and exactly what we dont need!!HCDM wants SU built with “rocks” not “primadonas”!!Give me a 2 star kid whose head aint in the clouds and let him take his 4 stars to the “clouds”!….on the other hand

  18. Russell MacEachern

    Ron,I liked what the ACC said yesterday about BC and they’ve gained a modicum of my respect!Who does BC think they are?Im soOoo glad they told BC if they have a problem with UConn they can feel free to leave the conference lol…they (ACC) finally showed me some class and that they were human!!Kudos to the ACC and shame on BC w/their hate and jealousy!

  19. Kevin Fitzgerald

    Terry:
    First off, Ebo is a stud on the football field. The dude is 6’4″ 240 lbs and can bowl over people. There’s a reason why schools like Bama, Notre Dame, Clemson, Florida, Arizona St, SU come after him. They don’t care about NYC “rankings” or “projections.” They see a freakishly athletic DE that can make an impact right now. Secondly, you misinterpreted my point. He is not selfish, all he cares about is winning. The team winning., That’s a good attitude to me.

    Chris:
    You’re way off. Ogundeko isn’t acting like a petulant child. Just because you’re upset he doesn’t have SU in his top 2, you can’t throw a temper tantrum. Who’s acting like the child now? It comes down to exposure, and you have to admit he’ll get more playing for a Florida/Clemson. That being said, he still is making his visit up on the Hill this weekend. Things can and will change. You have to wait and find out.

  20. @Russell MacEachern;

    Russ where did you read or hear that about BC. I really don’t mind if UCONN comes into the league. I know it would make the basketball even stronger that what it is at the moment. An article in today’s paper said that all of the 15 schools chancellors including Syracuse and Pittsburgh voted that all schools were staying put to make the ACC stronger.

    If UCONN get’s in they will have the 16 schools desired for a super conference and it would make sense for the ACC to form a North and South division in the league wouldn’t it?

    Looking forward to UCONN being a member of the ACC before the end of summer 2013.

    Russell,haven’t heard anything from you in awhile. Is everything ok?

  21. So far the others(#1/best HS talent of NYS) have not shown much either at others schools. But they were mentioned and inked more than EO has been, from media sites. All I’m saying is if this so called stud is all he is why no screaming from the NYC media. That’s all!! The headline of this article says “Ogundeko wants to shine,Can he do it on the hill”. Sounds like non-team player to me. These so called studs are a dime a dozen every year. When he shows/struts his stuff then we’ll flip the switch and show his light. But until then I really wonder if we want this kid at SU??? Is he more interested in himself or team play. How about Rouse the NYS Gator-Aid player of the year. No noise on him either!! How come HCDM/dougie???

  22. PLEASEread

    Yes, fall in line dumbs.

    The problem with the story is that every idiot to comment only had something to say about the first paraphrased quote. The story should have focused on the fact that the team went 5-1 over last 6 games and that’s caused one on NY states top recruits to not rule out Syracuse when he has offers from top programs like Clemson and Florida.

    Who in “Sam’s hell” am I? A Maxwell grad, a guy who grew up going to dinosaur and tullys, a guy who never needed to comment before because this site avoided people.com/pg 6 corverage.

    Anyway, this is a great time to be a Syracuse sports fan enjoy it and if you see Ebo around campus this weekend ask for an autograph.

  23. OrangeCrush27

    Well i think the comments that EBO made and the story makes it look like he is selfish.

    Trust me i have no problem with having a confident mentality and bringing some swag, but the thing that bothers me with Ebo is his uncertainty. I feel ‘Cuse football is on the rise and HCDM and company are doing recruiting “the right way.”

    I hope his NYC brothers can help lure him here. I think he will be more of a stud here with our D-Coordinator, opposed to Clemson.

    I’ll be glad when its all said and done.

  24. When all of this conference realignment started one of my hopes was that Penn State come back to the Big East,and I’ve mentioned that I hoped they would join the ACC now that we’re a member. Because of that hope, I was ridiculed/criticized and told that it would never happen.

    Well after reading an article written by Barry Alvarez of Wisconsin and posted on ESPN,the reason for the BIG to expand East was they feared Penn State was going to leave and come back to the East for all sports. That’s the reason they went after Rutgers and Maryland. So what I had dreamed of and hoped for to happen wasn’t out of the realm of possibility.

    I’ve come to the conclusion that the Big 10 is vulnerable and can be raided by other conferences. To the ACC I would like to ask,what’s taking you so long? Go after Penn State,it appears,all is not well and there just might be division within the ranks.

    So back to my original thought last summer,let’s bring Penn State back to the East where they belong and make them a member of the ACC and stabilize the league.

    This is the conclusion that I came to after reading the article. I might be way off with my conclusion but it’s nice to hope isn’t it?

  25. Russell MacEachern

    Ron,yeah Ron just a little depressed about my canadian,favorite uncle on the farm passed at 88 two weeks ago and been following all the ACC,B1G,SEC and B12 boards about realignment to keep my mind occupied!….I read that warning on a UNC board about the school Presidents warning to BC and on a CBS blogsite by official “witnesses/writers”!The comments were great as Im tired of BC thinking who the hell they are!!But for “the grace of god”….there bigots and afraid to play UConn on an even field!!…it looks like the ACC is getting tired of there shit too!!The ACC earned my respect w/that statement!!

  26. Russell MacEachern

    Havent u seen my responces Ron?Ive been trying to keep up with things and thanks for the hoops updates Ron!! “WBB”!!

  27. Russell MacEachern

    They were warned at that meeting yesterday (BC) and told if they keep up there shit (blocking) they’re welcome to leave the conference lol,I love it and I’ll bet they’re terrified…dumb donkey snobs!Its been a PR nightmare to the southern schools!

  28. It’s nice to see you up and kicking. I went ahead and bought my tickets to the Pinstripe Bowl the other day. Looking forward to the game,it should be a good one.

    I read where the chancellors and or presidents of the 15 schools that are members of the ACC voted to stay together and form a strong/great league. Just hoping that they all are men of their word and when they all shake hands it becomes bond that will hold them together.

  29. Russell MacEachern

    Ron,that not news?PSU and JoPa have been pushing for RU since the mid 90s and quite publicly too!Ron,PSU will NEVER leave the B1G in 100 years and its only wishfull thinking and sour grapes by a handfull of bitter fans about the Sandusky incident!

  30. Russell MacEachern

    Espescially now that they got there wish…eastern rivals RU and EVEN MD to join them in there recruiting grounds…Ron either the Big12 or us ACC will be gone in a short time as SEC,B1G and PAC wont lose ANYONE but pick up a few!!Whats left will attempt to cobble together a 4th Superconference (B12,ACC,BE)!

  31. Russell MacEachern

    Ron,wouldnt it be something if EO surprises everyone and commits?Whats the odds?Very slim but who really knows?After all his friends are here and its close to home!AhhhH ..wishful thinkin I guess..

  32. Russell,I’ve said from the beginning that I thought EO would commit to Syracuse. This weekend should be hugh for the Cuse.

    The two things that really stick out for Syracuse is immediate playing time and that most of his friends are already here. Jayson Bromley has a great story to tell and I hope that EO gets a chance to talk to him and listen to what he has to say. The four recruits on campus this weekend will be guest at the basketball game Saturday night.

    All of the above favors Syracuse,let’s hope that all ends well this weekend.

  33. Russell MacEachern

    Ron,Ive been hearin were targeting 5/7 more juco’s to potentially fill spots?What about good solid hs kids that are still uncommitted?Too many jucos is not a good sign in regards to a young building program?I hope the Dougie dont make this a regular thing for reasons u already know!!Hopefully its a temporary measure, 1 or 2 now and again OK but 2/3 a week?Bad sign…some of the less knowledgable guys dont seem to get it!Im sure Carl and Dip no what I mean and u too of course!

  34. EO is going to Clemson…..I guarantee it

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