Thanks to the ACC’s new scheduling format, Syracuse will travel to Florida at least three times in a four-year stretch. That makes recruiting in the Sunshine State a little more accessible, but also a little more important. Based on Syracuse’s needs for the Class of 2023, one player from Florida stands out as a big-time target for Dino Babers and company. And that player is, drumroll please…
Middleburg High School running-back Michael Mitchell. Since Sean Tucker will be draft-eligible this coming April, SU’s running-back room is about to be wide open. Bring in a guy like Mitchell, now the direction is a little clearer, isn’t it?
Now let’s take a look at some of the schools that have offered the 3-star. Arkansas and Louisville are the big dogs in the mix, but given the presence those programs have in college football, you can’t bank on playing time there. The main problem will be Iowa State. The Cyclones have turned around completely under Matt Campbell, reaching five straight bowl games. Other than those three? Schools include Appalachian State, Buffalo, Georgia Southern, Troy, and Middle Tennessee State. Quite the powerhouses. Sure, Iowa State, Arkansas, and Louisville will be tough to beat, but Syracuse would be foolhardy to think it doesn’t have a chance at landing Mitchell.
The Orange can offer Mitchell what the Razorbacks and Cyclones can not: three trips to your home state in four years. That’s pretty enticing, isn’t it? The Cardinals are the problem in that regard because they can offer that too. But for someone as talented as Mitchell, playing significant minutes at Syracuse is almost a certainty. Considering Louisville’s sustained success recently (only missed a bowl game twice since 2010), it’s hard to be certain you’ll get playing time there. So at this point, it’s actually playing or being on one of the best teams in the ACC but not playing as much.
Syracuse has legs up on Arkansas and Iowa State in the trips back home category and Louisville in the playing time category. The rest of the schools in the mix aren’t Power Five, which gives SU a massive edge over all of them. The need will be there with Tucker likely gone. As the above tweet shows, he has plenty of talent. And with an offensive coordinator like Robert Anae at the helm, who knows what untapped potential he’s yet to reach. Mitchell is one of the most dynamic running backs in the Class of ’23, and he’s the Sunshine State gem Syracuse needs.