This month could be heaven for Orange Nation or a tantalizing near miss. Ebenezer Ogundeko and Augustus Edwards say they’re a package that could come Syracuse’s way, and they continue to prove their value on the recruiting front. The dynamic duo is a much-talked about commodity. Ogundeko participating this weekend in Nike’s The Opening, a four-day training program for the country’s elite high school players, at the Nike World Headquarters in Oregon. Edwards is keeping Orange Nation in suspense until he decides Tuesday.
E.O. received a bid to the invite-only event by shining in Nike’s New York SPARQ combine at the beginning of May. Both Ebenezer and Augustus earned honorable mentions in a field of over 900 athletes. The Opening invited only the top 150 players in the country, and could be one of the final steps before E.O. makes his decision. Edwards intends to announce his plans on July 10th, and E.O. will wait a little longer until the 20th.
ESPN HS writer Kynon Codrington recapped the New York SPARQ event and had nothing but great things to say about E.O.:
“Local prospect Ebenezer Ogundeko out of Thomas Jefferson (Brooklyn, N.Y.) did nothing to tarnish his growing reputation and offer list in posting an impressive 91.77 SPARQ rating. Ogundeko tossed the power ball 40 feet and had a 32-inch vertical. The stout defensive lineman reported an early Syracuse offer back in February after the Philadelphia Nike Combine. Now, the 6-foot-3, 227-pounder boasts more than 20 offers. He has made the most of the offseason combine circuit and is certainly one to watch this fall.”
E.O. is giving Syracuse some national attention, just as QB commit Zach Allen has with the Elite 11 invite. Syracuse remains the only program that has offered both players. Florida and Notre Dame are represented well at The Opening event. Seven of the Gators’ 18 commits are heading to Oregon, and the Irish are sending 6 of its’ 16 commits.
E.O. has been interacting with other commits as well as fans from Gator Nation via Twitter. E.O. retweeted top-running back prospect Kelvin Taylor, a Florida commit and son of NFL vet Fred Taylor, about The Opening.
Could E.O. give Doug Marrone that first national-profile recruit? None of SU’s 7 commits received an invite to The Opening. If Ogundeko signs with the Orange, he’ll give them the only one that matters.
Posted: Brendan Glasheen
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Editor’s note: The original version of this story stated both Ogundeko and Edwards were invited to The Opening. Only Ebenezer traveled to Beaverton, while both competed in Nike’s SPARQ combine. Thanks. -DA