After months of waiting and anticipation, Wayne Williams will officially become a member of the Syracuse football roster this January. The former 3-star DT out of ASA College graduated from JUCO in September, and will be making his way up to the Salt City in less than two months.
Orange Nation, you’re probably thinking, “We’ve heard that one before.”
Williams originally commit to SU all the way back in May 2012. The Brooklyn native was supposed to be featured on the football field this fall for the Orange. But academic requirements kept him at ASA longer than expected. What’s different now is that Williams has his degree from ASA. His official transcripts and forms have been sent to SU. But more importantly, Williams has squared his return with Syracuse defensive line coach Tim Daoust. He was ecstatic to hear that Williams was finally ready to move on from junior college.
“He was just happy. During that time he was losing a lot of defensive tackles and everything wasn’t going as planned. We were having a rough ride in the ACC in the beginning, and so he was just happy, letting me know that I got to get up here ASAP, that he needs some help.”
Wayne Williams will be a year tardy, but better late than never. Syracuse could certainly use his help with the expected loss of senior Jay Bromley. Williams played in four games with ASA, he said, and has continued to train at his old Lincoln HS facilities in Brooklyn since his graduation. Over the last year, Syracuse fans have watched the Wayne Williams saga develop, as he nearly turned from mean pass-rusher to myth. Orange Nation questioned whether he’d ever wear the Orange and Blue. The talk just fueled Williams to push harder with his studies and schoolwork.
“I use it as motivation. Everything is not what it seems, because I’m out here busting my butt and I try to show that on the field and off the field. I went from a 1.6 GPA [in high school] to a 3.2. That’s not somebody who’s taking school lightly, so I just try to prove people wrong all the time, and that’s what I’ve been doing all my life.”
He told the Fizz he’s ready to finally leave Brooklyn. It’ll be the first time in his life that he’s truly left his beloved hometown. Throughout the process of getting back his eligibility, Wayne had one guiding force steering him in the right direction. It was good friend and an almost Syracuse commit, class of 2011 star Ishaq Williams.
“He said it’s time to grow up. At Lincoln it’s a big show, it can’t be about me, me, me! It’s about being a team player, you can’t all about the attention. He tells me it’s not the Wayne show anymore, it’s all about the brand you represent. I have a prestigious brand with Syracuse. I’m going to uphold the honor.”
Williams will still have to wait for the 2014 season to finally hit the Carrier Dome turf, but he’ll still have two years of eligibility remaining when he gets to campus in January. He’s been watching and studying every football game this year. He was ecstatic after SU’s 20-3 victory over Maryland this past Saturday. Coach Williams still saw room for improvement from the defense: “We have to attack the ball more! Let’s live in that backfield.”
Regardless, Syracuse has another weapon on defense next year to go along with six other defensive commits in the class of 2014. And he thinks he can make the journey up to the Salt City with a few extra friends.
“Operation: Pack the Dome,” Williams proclaimed to the Fizz.
It’s the code word for his own recruitment of current 5-star Lincoln HS DT Thomas Holley, who’s visited the Syracuse campus several times. He wants the Loudhouse to be rocking when he and his buddy, who is set to graduate from Lincoln this spring, come up to SU for a visit in December. Although the 6’5″, 300-lb mammoth DT is being pursued by big schools like Notre Dame, Florida and Penn State, with waning interest in SU, Williams sill thinks the Orange has a shot at NYC’s next big recruit.
In the meantime, he’s been trying to sell Daoust and the coaching staff on 6’6”, 325-lb OL Rotchill Medor, who continues to impress at ASA College.
“That boy comes off that football, and he drives you. Coach Daoust said he watched film on him, he likes the kid, and he said he passed his film on to other coaches. Rotchill Medor is the impact player on that [ASA College] offensive line.”
Regardless of who he comes with, the better news is he’ll actually be on his way. It took longer than expected, but the Wayne Williams show is coming to Syracuse.
Posted by: Kevin Fitzgerald