George McDonald’s Wide Receivers Developing as a Unit for Syracuse Football

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via Syracuse Media

George McDonald has returned to his roots by taking over for Rob Moore as wide receivers coach, and through spring practice, McDonald’s been pleased with the “growth as a unit.”

According to an interview with, McDonald believes the wide receivers are playing at a “higher level,” and he couldn’t be more proud with the development of his receivers. That’s good news, given that 2013 was a bleak season for wideouts. Keeping everyone fresh and rotating in all listed as the position is helping the development–again, good news, since they need it.

McDonald is giving a lot of coach-speak, especially through spring training, when it’s all about the positives all the time. But updates about McDonald’s new scheme will be necessary for Orange Nation, which had to deal with inconsistent output from last year’s batch of wide receivers. Five recruits at the position will keep the battles interesting all spring and summer.

With Broyld swinging around–this year as a wide receiver–and now listed opposite Jarrod West as a top receiver, keep an eye on those two, as their experience and leadership will help shape the roles of the new recruits. McDonald’s been pleased with Quinta Funderbunk, who only played four games last year and netted 50 yards and three recs, and named dropped Brisley Estime, one of the brighter spots in offensive play last year. But there’s no surprise if 4-star recruit KJ Williams–the first 4-star recruit since before Doug Marrone–or  Steve Ishmael sees immediate playing time come August 29, when the Orange host Villanova.

It’s early, but the talent at wide receiver can only go up. Who are you watching from the sidelines?

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  1. orangeinva says:

    McDonald could prove to be a huge upgrade over Rob Moore.

    I believe you’re going to see Syracuse WRs be more physical in their route running and downfield blocking.

    There is some talent at WR already and more showing up come August- though as freshmen may not contribute this year.
    Fleming, Funderburk, West, Broyld have size and Bristime is quick. Do we have a qb that can get the ball downfield accurately and an OLINE that will give them time? If yes, Cuse could be fun to watch on offense…first time/longtime!

  2. Terry says:

    Fleming so far is a bust!! What has he shown???????

    For once I feel one of SU’s better FR recruits should sit out this year=Ishmael!! Knee issues cause my concern. Let him heal up good!! I know he was promised starting time, but they(SU and Ishmael)had to know about his knee issues!!

    Broyld so far has been a disappointment. But I feel its because he’s moved all over the place and has not settled down yet. Plus I’m concerned how SU treats him in upcoming great talented NYS players down the road!!

    Looking at the High School talent pool for 2015 in NYS/LI. Really there is only 4 or 5 quality players STATE WIDE!! So you’ll see more out of state players coming to SU. Since SU has lost its mojo with NYS/LI talent!!!

    do not forget the kids of psabusedu!! the ncaa did!!

  3. Yeah Terry,NJ beast OL S.Gonzalez verbally committed to Abuser U’s Franklin a few days ago…sick why family’s send their kids to that cult.

  4. Terry says:

    I hear banjo music every time I’m by PSABUSERU!!

  5. Malone says:

    Franklin is a recruiting problem. He will hit NJ and Maryland hard. He will take out Rutgers and Maryland because his B1G team is better than theirs. Our only angle other then PT, (which Mary-land and Rutgers will also do) is a different conference, so we have to hope the ACC continues to strengthen its football cache (as we do too). I was a bit bummed by the Gonzalez verbal as I thought we had a shot (he was high on us early on).

  6. chris says:

    While Moore was a excellent player ,that never translated to his coaching ability. I saw fare too many fundamental flaws last year that convinced me of that fact. Ashton Broyld can’t catch a ball when he is moving down field . If George McDonald can reverse this weakness then he has achieved something special. If Ishmael is hurting then I agree that red-shirting him is very wise. K J should get plenty of field time.Corey Cooper and Fundy will get out there and maybe even Winfield. Hunt according to reports is jacking his game and given the upgraded WR unit it bodes well for the offense both in the air and ground. If I have to explain why the running game improves football isn’t your game.

  7. Terry says:

    Ron/Russ 1/2 of spring ball is over for SU and DA and crew just give us crumbs. Why e-mail him???????????? If he doesn’t read his own site what worth is he. It makes no sense!!

    As for NJ this state is all about glamour and stars. It thinks its really on Broadway according to some of my buds living there and are HS football freaks. Maybe other than PA, NJ is a great farm for HS talent in the NE!! These kids want the lights of PSU,ND,OSU and other WELL KNOWN entities of college football!! SU lacks that totally in football, but you can see that in SUBB with its recruiting!! And the stall(I call it that) of the new football facilities being started shows the SU administration knowingly or unknowingly doing its best as playing SUFB as back word and believe me other programs recruiters are tell the high school players that too. That SUFB is not a priority at SU. But SUBB is!! It proves that here at this site too!! Where’s the love for SUFB here!! Not lately!! To me its just about the fame of the SUBB program(well deserved) and lack of trying of the administration(Dr. Gross included)!! I hear very little from the SUFB alums out there about lack of interest in their old FB team. But good number of SUBB alums always pumping up the SUBB program!! This HAS to change before SUFB can get the diamonds of HSFB in the NE. Please someone with a kick, get a bull horn and stand on that pile of material(at the new facilities) and yell “get thing built before the ice age shows up here at SU”.

  8. Cuse Don't Luse says:

    I hate to be the negative side of things, but if our receiving core didn’t improve from last year this team would be in serious trouble considering that receiver was an obvious weakness last year.

    I’m going to have to agree with Terry on Fleming he hasn’t shown anything.

    I think West will be relatively the same as last year and then Estime and Broyld are exciting make you miss players, but outside of that there is a lot open and it will be interesting to see how it plays out.

  9. Hey kid, nice to see you here.I’m hoping KJ becomes our homerun guy…sorta reminds me of RU’s Kenny Britt physically and hopefully results wise. Look’s like Ron’s been busy?Terry you’re right about FB getting shortshrifted here on articles and maybe kids notice BB overshadow’s them? I hope not???Like Malone I thought Gonzalez would give us more consideration butfor some reason the cult up in Pennsybama must have rejuvenated its old lore!?!Unreal the bad luck we get!!

  10. orangeinva says:

    Yeah you guys are right on Flemming…

    2 years ago he played behind Sales and Lemon..

    Last year, he only had 1 game to play with the Oklahoma phenom before a season ending injury. He was scheduled as a 1 at the WR position- so he can’t have any talent as it’s a widely held belief that he was run out on the field as a decoy for West and Broyld.

    So now this year, healthy and with likely a better position coach,, there is no way in helsinke he could possibly catch 30 balls this year. At 6’3″ 210lbs, he should only be pumping up pigskins.

  11. Dr. bill says:

    Just read on Cuse offered a big DE from NY state….6-6 270, who says Cuse is his dream school. The problem with Cuse recruiting is this: Even when kids say we are their dream school, they sign elsewhere…..can we blame them…we had a coach who said Cuse was his dream job ..and them he left…..

  12. Ron says:

    @Russell Dangerfield;

    The following paragraph was taken from an article posted on earlier today.

    They were talking about the coaches who were in attendance for their football camp.

    Tight ends coach Bobby Acosta, who has long ties to New Jersey, said three high schools from the state attended: Robbinsville, Mountain Lakes and St. Peter’s Prep, which could bode well for the Orange down the road.

    Bobby Acosta is the new designated recruiter for the NYS/LI/NJ areas that I had mentioned earlier. Have any information that you’d like to share about him?

  13. Malone says:

    OK VA, easy. Your points are well made and received. I think the key point to your post is the Moore vs McDonald argument, and that applies to all our receivers. That said, Flemming doesn’t have a good track record of stayign healthy. Cornelius, Funderburke and one of the Coreys should be able to contribute, so I don’t see the WR position being more of the same either, even if we didn’t have the class coming in that we have. That said, we do have that class, and if any of them have the talent to get on the field (KJ, Custis, et al).

  14. Malone says:

    Ron, I saw that article as well. St.P is the only one of real influence in that group. Mountain Lakes is a good Lax school. The other good thing about St. P is who their competition is. They are in the parocials meaning they play the St. Joe’s and Don Bosco and Bergen Catholic, Union Catholic, Paramus Catholic…These are the power schools in north Jersey. It’s good to get in that circle. Acosta was a NJ high school coach, down the shore I think. There is some talent in that region these days, but it’s not the strongest region. SW Jersey, by Philly, and NE Jersey, by NYC is where the strength is. Both have inner city and high end suburban schools. This is where we are known. This is where we’ve taken guys from. Acosta was at Deleware and Widener in SE PA. I would think he’d have a better tie to the SW of NJ. I am glad we are getting attention from NE schools too.

  15. Ron says:


    It’s because of the members like you and Russell that give the rest of us the information needed to make sensible/vauable conclusions on the talent coming from NJ.

    Russell turned me on to NJ high school football last year and I soon found out what you and he were ranting about. The talent is plentiful there and I hope with the current efforts that are being made we start reaping some of the benifits.

  16. Terry says:

    Ascosta is a dice roll right now. Malone is right most talent is from his mentioned areas and Ascosta is not from there!! Down the shore to me means the southern NJ area. That’s like upstate NY talent wise. The catholic schools rule HSFB in NJ now and always will!! They recruit their talent!! That’s a no brainer to hit up on them.

    The coaches clinic is a better device than Ascosta now. Butter up the staffs at NJ high schools won’t hurt others do it. But like I said before right now SU just doesn’t have the bright lights for the best talent of NJ. But at the same time there’s good amount of 3 stars there to farm out to SU and get back in good graces with NJ’s High School Football Coaches!! SU has to butter up these guys/gals!!

  17. Ron,in a hurry with family ob’s but quick comments…Malone is spot on about NJ but their are even plums that turn out great in the smaller public’s throughout NJ…but watch Timber Creek HS,Elizabeth,Union,Sayreville,oh well too many to mention…just great to see energy going into our traditional strongholds!! I was getting doubts about our goals after PP left?? I’ll contact DA tonight or tomorrow asap!! Great hearing FB talk.I see our texas friend CDL is still with us.

  18. Ron says:

    @Russell Dangerfield;

    So the comment was made that all of the power schools in the North Jersey area recruits it’s players. If that’s true and I imagine it is then where do they recruit from? The rest of the state including the Southern schools??? It was reported back in February that one of the best LB’s in the class of 2015 is from Timber Creek and is VERY interested in Syracuse Univerasity.

    I honestly think with the number of scholarships that’s been offered to recruits in NJ,Syracuse ends up with 5-10 committments for the class of 2015.

  19. Terry says:

    Russ your right about Elizabeth, Union and Sayreville and others. They are major programs with great winning traditions.

  20. Thanks Terry I see you DO know of NJHS FB and never showed that before.I thought maaybe u were just a little biased or lacked NJ understanding.

  21. Terry says:

    Russ just have old buds that live in center and Northern NJ and are SU fans as well. They know the high school scene there!! 10/15 years ago those mentioned programs above were powerful. But the recruiting from the Catholic programs slowed that down. Urban/city schools really can’t complete against these school college preparedness’ wise!! So you can’t blame the kids playing for the recruiters!!

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