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Syracuse bolsters secondary with three-stars Cole, Greenwood

For the first time in a couple of months, Syracuse football finally has some down time. SU won’t find out its bowl opponent until Sunday and even after that will have at least three more weeks until it plays another game. But don’t let that down time fool you, the Orange were still very active this week, specifically on the recruiting trail.

Just a week after picking up commitments from a trio of four-star recruits on the defensive side of the football, the Orange added even more talent on D this week with reaffirmation from one three-star prospect and a commitment from another. And remember, this all comes in the same week in which Andre Cisco was named the ACC’s Defensive Rookie of the Year. This Syracuse defense is more than on the up-and-up at this point and after locking in this most recent pair of studs, it’s only getting better.

Adrian Cole

The news Cole (above) has riled up over the last few days isn’t so much that he’s coming to Syracuse (we’ve known that since his original commitment back in June), but instead that, from what he has said, his decision is official and final:

The Florida native re-upped with the Orange after an in-home visit from defensive backs coaches Nick Monroe and Kim McCloud earlier in the week. Cole is currently rated as a consensus three-star recruit by most national recruiting services and checks in as a top-300 player in the always-loaded state of Florida. He also has an existing connection to SU. Cole attends Plantation High School in south Florida, which just so happens to be the alma mater of SU tight end Ravian Pierce. Plantation is also the alma mater of former Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier so that’s a pretty good pipeline to be coming from.

In terms of his on-field play, Cole is nothing short of a ball hawk. Despite being pretty undersized at 5-foot-10, 156 pounds, Cole displays a knack for one-on-one coverage. He’s excellent at high-pointing the ball for easy picks and also features great closing speed that helps him undercut a lot of underneath routes to break up what should be easy completions. The biggest fix that Cole will have to make once he gets to SU is putting some weight on his very thin and wiry frame, but if he can figure out how to bulk up and contend with some of the bigger receivers in the ACC, he should provide some nice cornerback depth for SU in the future.

Aman Greenwood

From cornerback to safety, SU fortified both defensive back spots when three-star recruit Aman Greenwood pledged to the Orange on Wednesday night:

Much like Cole, Greenwood is a consensus three-star recruit and is rated as the ninth-best prospect in Washington, D.C. by 247Sports. But the similarities between the two don’t stop there. Greenwood also already has a close tie-in with the Syracuse football program. Greenwood plays for St. John’s College High School, the same prep school that freshman defensive end Caleb Okechukwu attended before coming to SU.

On the field, Greenwood is a jack of all trades. In his high school career, the 6-foot, 180-pounder has played cornerback, nickelback and safety and has had a lot of success at all three spots. His bread and butter (for now) is seemingly at safety and his skill set plays perfectly at that spot. He’s got great instincts for someone so young and seems to have an innate ability to diagnose a play as it’s about to happen. Like Cole, he’s also got great closing speed and is a sound tackler in the open field. With a skill set and upside like that, SU should feel very lucky to have him, especially considering programs like Michigan, Missouri and Boston College were all nipping at his heels.

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