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This Week In Syracuse Recruiting: Ayala Stays in the 2018 Class

Syracuse basketball and football are still months away from their first games of the 2017-18 season, but this is the time where games are won and lost. SU hits the recruiting trail every offseason in an attempt to bring the best players in the country to Central New York, and it can be a lot to try and keep up with. Luckily, I had nothing better to do.

SU Basketball Offers Kofi Cockburn

I would argue Syracuse basketball still has work to do in this year’s recruiting class before thinking about the future, but Monday the Orange offered a scholarship to a big man who still has two full high school seasons to play.

Kofi Cockburn is originally from Jamaica, but moved to the United States less than two years ago to play basketball in New York. He plays at Christ the King in Queens during the school season and for the NY Rens — who sent three players to Power Five schools last season — during AAU ball. He’s 6-11 and 250 pounds, which is more than enough to fill the middle of the 2-3. But Syracuse’s problem has never been finding a body to put in that spot, it’s been finding the right basketball mind. Dajuan Coleman couldn’t do it, Paschal Chukwu has struggled in short time there and Tyler Lydon just wasn’t big enough to beat the best bigs in the ACC. Cockburn would be a nice get for SU, but it’s way too early to speculate much of anything.

Eric Ayala Will Stay In The 2018 Recruiting Class

As I hinted at before, Syracuse’s 2017 recruiting class isn’t up to par with previous years. Flipping the script on that became much more difficult last week when Eric Ayala announced he’d stay in the Class of 2018.

Ayala is one of Syracuse’s biggest targets. The Orange was hoping he would reclassify to the Class of 2017 and help SU replace John Gillon, Andrew White, Tyler Lydon, etc. Instead, he’ll stay in the 2018 class and Syracuse misses out on another class-changing guard. The Orange still only has Tyus Battle and Frank Howard returning next season, and Howard Washington is the only guard signed on to join them as an incoming freshman. You can’t have only three guards, not even in Jim Boeheim’s system.

The news isn’t all bad. Ayala will still have to choose a school in 2018, and Syracuse has been one of the most-often-heard names surrounding him. But after investing so much time into a player, and Syracuse has recruited Ayala aggressively, it’s tough to not be able to get Ayala when SU could really use him.

SU Football Offers Darryl Jones

Dino Babers had Syracuse fans excited when 2017 QB commit Tommy Devito was promoted to four stars on a couple of the big recruiting sites, and Babers proved Devito wasn’t a fluke when four-star center Tyrone Sampson committed to Syracuse last week. The noisy, no-huddle head coach isn’t done hunting yet; last week the Orange offered 2018 four-star wide receiver Darryl Jones.

You don’t have to be on the coaching staff to know what a four-star receiver could do for Syracuse’s offense. Fast gets faster. Numbers get bigger. But like Devito, Jones isn’t a consensus four-star recruit. 24/7Sports has him at three stars, and ESPN doesn’t have him ranked yet. Out of Virginia Beach, Jones has Power Five offers from Virginia, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, Maryland and now Syracuse. He’s ranked as high as the No. 53 wideout in the 2018 class (24/7), but also as low as No. 183 (Scout). It looks like the jury is still out on this recruit, but Syracuse is all in. Plus, if Dino like him Orange fans should too.

Posted: Nathan Dickinson

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The Fizz is owned, edited and operated by Damon Amendolara. D.A. is an ’01 Syracuse graduate from the Newhouse School with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.

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