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FizzCast: Gus Edwards Exclusive on Choosing Syracuse & Zach Allen’s Role

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Yesterday morning, Tottenville RB Augustus Edwards changed the outlook of Syracuse’s football class of 2013. Crediting Doug Marrone and Coach John Anselmo, Gus chose the Orange, and it was a no-brainer. The Fizz caught up with Edwards on the day of his announcement, who admitted it was Syracuse all the way.

“[Syracuse] was #1 for a while. Then I got to the point where I knew I could trust the coaches because they had been recruiting me the hardest. When everything came down, I just had to pick the right place for me, and that place was Syracuse.”

The tailback rushed for nearly 1,500 yards this past year, and couldn’t be any more excited about joining SU, but owes another class of 2013 recruit some credit.

The X-Factor down the final stretch of Edwards’ recruitment was none other than Texas QB Zach Allen. Let that sink in. The future Elite 11 competitor told The Fizz he made it his mission to make sure Augustus was all sold on SU.

“I’ve talked with him a lot [recently]. We’re just building a good relationship, and we really feel like we can get things going at Syracuse.”

Allen has become a star this summer for Orange Nation. The Temple HS product became the rare SU commit from the football-crazy state of Texas. He also became the first Orange quarterback ever invited to the prestigious Elite 11 Camp as well. He has been lauded by national media and Elite 11 coach Trent Dilfer. Now he has been connecting with current SU targets to convince them to come to the Hill. How could any player be more valuable without ever playing a down for Syracuse? Allen mentioned how he envisions Syracuse emerging as an underdog over the next handful of seasons in the ACC, with himself and Augustus as instrumental pieces.

Who wouldn’t look forward to handing off the pigskin to the bruising 6‚Äô2‚Äù 220 lb. Edwards? Gus will benefit from an offense where Marrone likes to mix up the carries. Last season,¬†Doug would occasionally balance the amount of snaps between guys like Antwon Bailey, Prince Tyson-Gulley, Adonis Ameen-Moore and Jerome Smith.

The next step for Edwards may be to make sure there is a menacing pass-rusher on the other side of the ball. Enter Ebenezer Ogundeko. Ebo attended Gus’ press conference on Staten Island yesterday, and the two will be visiting the SU campus this weekend. Edwards knows how important this is in possibly landing Ogundeko later this month.

“[Ebenezer] is on good terms with Syracuse. Maybe I can recruit him a little. I hope we get to play at Syracuse together.”

The Fizz caught up with Ebenezer as well, who said he was proud of his friend Augustus, and happy to see another NYC product commit to Syracuse. The same goes for Edwards, who wants to see that pipeline continue.

“It’s shows that NYC has talent. Syracuse is recruiting us, and they want to be the school to put us on that next level of football. I hope a lot of kids will follow and that SU will keep recruiting this area. I just want to be the next big thing out of NYC.”

Not only is Augustus the latest example of a NYC prospect rallying behind the “Syracuse cause,” coveting the ability of playing with former city teammates and competition, but his Head Coach at Tottenville, Jim Munson, also echoes the sentiment. He enjoys watching some of the city’s best talent make their way up to the Dome . And yesterday, he got to watch one of his own head north.

“I felt good about Syracuse. [Augustus] is real comfortable with Coach Marrone and Coach Anselmo. Other than West Point, [SU] is the only other Division 1 school in our state, so it’s important always to give [Syracuse] the opportunity to have a shot at our kids. It’s a good fit.”

And much to Munson’s liking, Marrone and company will have one more crack at Ebenezer when he and Augustus visit Syracuse this weekend. But for right now, part 1 of the potential package deal is sweet enough for Orange Nation to enjoy.

Posted: Kevin Fitzgerald

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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