With National Signing Day inching closer and closer, a select group of talented football players will soon make their way to Syracuse to continue to help the program build.
Syracuse is no national powerhouse. It doesn’t go undefeated. It has strong talent at some positions, and is weaker at others. There is always room for improvement and when it narrows down to recruiting, it could just be the next big name to hit the gridiron in the Dome.
Since the Doug Marrone era, the program has continued to grow. Marrone led the team to two bowl games during his four-year tenure, and coached some big names such as Ryan Nassib, Justin Pugh, Shamarko Thomas, Alec Lemon, and Arthur and Chandler Jones, all who have made it in the NFL.
Then Scott Shafer took over and had a big job. He was a first-year head coach in a new conference with a new quarterback. After 12 games, he had succeeded and took his team to its third bowl game in four years—also its third bowl win in four years.
The program is growing, and here are five things that make Syracuse a favorable destination for some of the nation’s top high school football players.
The ACC. For a talented player who wants to be the face of a program and do big things to be more attractive for the future, the ACC is the conference to be in. It may not have the same mystique as the SEC, but there is good competition in the ACC. That means more of a likelihood for national television spotlight. Spotlight = national attention.
The recent success. Syracuse has won three bowl games in the last four years. It seems wherever Syracuse plays, there is some sort of a fan base. This is eye-catching to players because they know the program is legitimate and has a history of recent success. For a player who wants to join a program with a history of growth, success, and recent winning, Syracuse is the place for him.
Scott Shafer. He’s not your typical college football coach. He has his focus on playing football to win and be successful, but he has the “hard-nosed” attitude. He builds the program on family and working together as one team to be successful. He doesn’t like one star player, like Jameis Winston for Florida State. He is big on numerous no-name players making big impacts. Remember the guy who made a catch with six seconds left in the BC game to send Syracuse to a bowl game? His name is Josh Parris.
Carrier Dome. That is, if Syracuse will still be playing in the Carrier Dome five or six years from now. With more success, that means more people will fill the Dome on Saturday afternoons to watch the Orange. Right now, it can get loud. Those are the diehard fans. People get excited to watch a solid college football game and when it’s indoors, it can get louder than it would outside. Although it is no Michigan Stadium, it’s the loud house of the ACC. This is an atmosphere that many high school football players should want to be around on Saturdays in the fall.
The opportunity for national spotlight. When better players come in, more people are interested. When two high-talented teams play, more people are interested. That means a national audience is more invested and it leads to playing games on national television. With Syracuse’s recent success in bowl games and even during the regular season, this should make high school players more excited to play in a different environment.
Syracuse is guaranteed to have a good, competitive season in the ACC, but it also has tentative games scheduled against Maryland at the Dome and Notre Dame at MetLife. The new season begins in August, but next year’s players have five solid reasons to choose Orange today.
Posted by: Austin Pollack