With the recent flurry of commitments, lost in the fray was KJ Gray’s commitment to Boston College. The 2016 wide receiver is relevant to SU not for his commitment, but rather, for what the coaching staff told him.
Gray said that he hadn’t heard from the Syracuse coaches in roughly two months, because the staff told him that they were not accepting commitments from any other wide receivers in the class. This would be completely understandable if the Orange already had a group of wide outs committed, but in reality, Sadiq Palmer is the only one.
Palmer, who gave his verbal back in April, is from New Jersey, like recent commit Dymelle Parker, and has good size and speed on the outside. In addition, hybrid player Darius Stubbs is also part of the 2016 class.
Considering how heavily the team has struggled throwing the ball in the last two seasons, its rather surprising that the team would close the door on any playmakers willing to come to Central New York. This season, the Orange will hopefully boast an improved passing attack. Led by sophomore Steve Ishmael and junior Brisly Estime on the outside and converted Erv Phillips on the inside, the receiving corps looks more formidable than it has at any point since Ryan Nassib left for the NFL. It’s no Alec Lemon and Marcus Sales combination, but at this point, SU fans should take what they can get.
So, why have the Orange decided to stop recruiting the position? Well, when the 2016 class arrives on campus, Ishmael will be a junior, Estime and Alvin Cornelius will be seniors, and Phillips will be a junior. Lower on the depth chart, Sean Avant will be a junior, Adly Enoicy will be just a sophomore, and Jamal Custis will be junior.
Yet, it’s still perplexing that the Orange would only look for one true wide receiver in the 2016 class because there are no 2015 signees that would arrive in time for this season. So, by 2016, the Orange’s receiving group will be led by Ishmael and veteran-laden, meaning that the staff will probably start to recruit the position heavily for 2017.