So the Spring Game did not go well for Syracuse’s supposed high-powered offense but, in the eyes of at least one person, that was down to impressive defensive play. Justin Ellis, out of Roswell High School in Georgia made his first official visit to the Hill this weekend and was offered a scholarship. He seemingly accepted the offer right on the spot and signed his Letter of Intent to play football at Syracuse next season. Ellis is unrated by all of the four major rating sites and is the fourth defensive end to join the Class of 2017.
— Justin Ellis (@Justin_Ellis5) April 22, 2017
Babers made it clear on his first National Signing Day that he wants to build his team, on both sides of the ball, from the inside out. Whether or not he is actually doing that is up for debate, but he did bring in six defensive linemen and two offensive linemen in this class, including Ellis. In his first recruiting cycle, Babers brought in eight guys to fill the trenches, four on both side of the ball.
Elllis’ signing will likely be the final piece in the Class of 2017 puzzle, but you never know. It is unlikely that anyone expected Syracuse to land another player nearly three months after National Signing Day. With that said, Syracuse’s Class of 2017 will remain 55th in the nation, and 11th in the ACC. While that may not sound that exciting, it is an improvement from last season, when, according to 247 Sports, Syracuse came in at 64th in the country and 13th in the conference. In Shafer’s final year, Syracuse was 58th in the country and 13th in the ACC. This is the highest rated Syracuse recruiting class since 2014, (50th in the country).
The Ellis signing is hardly a sexy one but you never know. Recruiting, particularly in football, is a often a complete crap shoot. Orange fans were incredibly excited about four-star running back Robert Washington, who is now playing for Charlotte and has essentially fallen off the face of the Earth. J.J. Watt, one of, if not the best defensive player in the NFL, was a two-star recruit coming out of high school. That’s not to say that Ellis will be J.J. Watt but you don’t know what he can bring until he suits up.