It’s been an eventful offseason for the Syracuse Men’s Lacrosse program. Earlier this month, John Desko announced his decision to step down as the head coach after 22 years on the job. In the Hall of Famers place, Gary Gait was hired as just the fifth head coach in the 107 year history of ‘Cuse Lacrosse.
The former Syracuse great was the head man for the SU Women’s Lax Team for the past 14 years and had a fruitful tenure. Gait coached three different teams to the Final Four including his 2021 squad which fell just short to Boston College in the title game.
The three-time national champion has everybody excited about the future of Syracuse Lacrosse. That includes one recruit in the 2021 class. Matteo Corsi is an incoming freshman from Michigan and has been committed to SU since October of 2019.
The attackman was recruited by former Head Coach John Desko. Oftentimes when the coaching staff that scouted, offered, and recruited a prospect leaves the program, the recruit will lose interest in that school. That wasn’t the case with Corsi, in fact he’s optimistic about the future of Syracuse Lacrosse under the new coaching regime.
“ I think bringing in Coach Gait and Coach Pietramala is super exciting because I think they’re going to bring that freshness and really help out the culture to bring back that winning atmosphere.”
Corsi has some ideas for how Gait and Pietramala plan to bring back that championship culture at SU.
“ It’s just a matter of going back to basics and re-establishing some of the old winning culture ideals.”
Bringing back old ideals and beliefs is important, yes, but so is bringing in the “Jimmy’s and Joe’s” to get the job done on the field. Corsi is certainly a player that can help from the day he steps foot on campus.
The four-star recruit has played at the highest levels of lacrosse starting at a young age. Corsi was one of those guys with a birthday that would have allowed him to dominate at the lower age group levels of lacrosse. Instead of playing down with the competition though, he always played up.
Corsi and I actually played on the same travel team in middle school. Keep in mind I was about two years older than him at the time, as were most of the other players on the team. This experience of playing with the “big boys” from a young age allowed him to quickly excel at the game of lacrosse.
Of course, he’s always had the work ethic and the drive to be great as well. Corsi has done hours of training both on his own and with personal trainers including Nick Diegel. He’s a former Ohio State Lacrosse player and actually holds the world record for the fastest recorded lacrosse shot at 127.4 miles per hour.
Now, Corsi doesn’t shoot that fast but he’s been crafting and perfecting his footwork and stickwork for years and the culmination of all that hard work has him ready to compete at the summit of the lacrosse scene as a true freshman at Syracuse.
It helps that the offensive game plan at SU fits perfectly into Corsi’s playing style as an elite dodger and should present plenty of opportunities for the shifty attacker to be a threat early on in his career. The Michigan native liked what he saw from Pat March’s offense in 2021 and thinks Gait will make the offensive unit even better.
“ I think not only with Coach March, but with Coach Gait, they’re going to bring a lot more flare to this offense. What I loved about Coach March is that he lets the players play. I think he gives players the freedom to showcase their ability and skill. I think going forward, especially with Coach Gait in there it’s only going to get more exciting, effective, and entertaining to watch.”
Despite injuries and absences last season, the SU offense had a solid year. The Orange finished tied for 12th in the NCAA scoring about 14 goals per game. On the other hand though, Syracuse was also fifth out of the five ACC teams.
Corsi believes the SU offense was very efficient last season and it’s just a matter of tweaking small things here and there. Coming in as a freshman, the former IMG Academy Ascender believes he can help the unit as a freshman.
“I think I can come in and contribute in a lot of different ways. I think there’s an opportunity at the attack position and personally I think I can bring a dodging presence and draw double teams and throw good feeds and help initiate some offense.”
Corsi continues to say that his role doesn’t have to be limited to just the attack position.
“I see myself as an offensive player rather than just an attackman or an x-man. I feel comfortable anywhere on the field and can contribute anywhere on the field. That’s the beauty of playing a lot of attackmen. They have this versatile skill set that you can bring up top or at ‘x’ or they can invert. You’re bringing to most skilled players and in the offense and putting them all on the field. I think trying out Griffin Cook and Owen Seebold at different places was fruitful for the offense.”
Corsi should have plenty of opportunities to contribute in the March offense and with his skillset it could be a perfect marriage.
The lacrosse freshmen don’t arrive on campus until August of this year. They’ll then begin fall ball and preseason training. Corsi is one of six four-star recruits in the 2021 Syracuse recruiting class. You don’t have to wait until next spring to see Corsi and other future SU players in action though!
The 7th annual COMMITTED COMBINE takes place between July 6-8 and features the best high school players in the country. The participants will compete for three days and scrimmage as well. Several Syracuse commits will be in attendance and highlights will be all over social media. We’ll have more information on this event as it is released, but Corsi will be one of the ‘Cuse commits in attendance.
The first ever Nike Senior National All Star Game is set for July 10th. This event features the top 44 men’s and women’s lax players in the country. Corsi was selected for the men’s game and is one of only ten attackmen participating. The game will air on ESPN3 so tune in to watch Corsi and the other elite seniors compete!
For the full interview between the Fizz and Corsi click here.