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Syracuse Target DeShone Kizer Heads to Elite 11, But Favors Power Programs

This weekend DeShone Kizer will attend the Elite 11 quarterback camp in Columbus, OH without having made a decision. Syracuse was enamored with the Class of ’14 QB enough to be one of the first schools to offer him as sophomore. The Fizz profiled him in February ’12, when SU was the second school to offer him. Doug Marrone liked the 6’5”, 210 lb. dual-threat out of Toledo, OH with an intent to put the foot in the door early. He was aboard the ‘Cuse QB Carousel last season, but the four-star Kizer has eye-popping offers from Alabama and LSU, among other powers now. It looks like Tennessee, Wisconsin and Notre Dame are also in Kizer’s favorites.

The SEC powerhouses offering Kizer ended up delaying his decision. When he was a sophomore, his offers were from non-BCS schools Toledo and Bowling Green, plus SU and BC. Slowly but surely, he got the attention of Penn State and Ohio State among other big programs. Now, Kizer’s been flooded with attention from an array of schools. Once he received news of Bama and LSU earlier this year, he told ESPN.com’s Jared Shanker his plans did a complete 180:

“We almost prepared to maybe commit to a school. We laid out a few schools and compared and planned on making a decision in two or three weeks. Then this door opened and changed a lot of things.”

A lot’s changed obviously for Kizer and his recruiting trail. His length and strength separate him from the rest of the dual-threat QBs in his class. 247 Sports ranks Kizer the 4th best dual-threat signal-caller under center. According to Rivals, his interest in Syracuse is low. If there is any good news, it’s that he’s keeping his options open. According to Shanker, he had a top three of Michigan State, North Carolina and Northwestern before the Alabama and LSU offers. He recently said he’s hoping for an offer from Notre Dame. It sounds like the Vols might be one of his favorites as well (he recently tweeted out a photo of a huge Tennessee “T’).

“I’d say I’ll reevaluate things altogether. There’s going to be a few more schools to offer in the next month or two. I’ve had a lot of conversations with UCLA and Stanford, and I’m going to [Los Angeles] in the spring and maybe visit UCLA and go up to Stanford. Once that happens, I’ll try to make a solid top five before a decision.”

The New Orleans Times-Picayune wrote last week:

“Ohio standout Deshone Kizer may make his choice before the summer, perhaps even this weekend at LSU’s recruiting picnic for some of their top prospects. The 6-5, 220-pound dual-threat quarterback has been very high on the Tigers for some time, and with limited numbers available at the position, Kizer’s time may come sooner than later.”

Kizer did not make a decision this past weekend. Two weeks ago he tweeted that both Ohio State and Notre Dame visited him and watched him go through workouts. It was easy to see a high-profile, NFL-body prototype like Kizer skyrocketing up the recruiting rankings. Credit SU and the previous coaching staff. The only way the Orange was going to win a battle like this was by being first in. Like A.J. Long, SU was hoping to build a loyalty and goodwill by offering a Class of ’14 quarterback as early as any BCS school. But once the big boys got involved, Syracuse dropped out of his sights. Luckily, SU nailed down Long. No harm, no foul for the Orange. You gotta swing for the fences. When you connect it’s a homerun.

Posted: Brendan Glasheen

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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