We're counting down every SU football player, one a day, from Chandler Jones (#99) to Phil Thomas (#1). Keep track of every player profile here.
Next up on your Orange-Man Orientation: #88, Jerrod West
Position: Wide Receiver
Weight: 202 pounds
Hometown: Bethlehem, PA
High School: Liberty High School
2010 Stats: Nada. West broke his foot during pre-season camp and missed out on the entire 2010 season.
2011 Projections: Going into the season, think of Jerrod West as the Jordy Nelson of the Syracuse Orange: a solid option amidst a very, very, very deep receiving corps. Like the Packers' wideout, West won't be the first, second, or even third pass catcher that'll be relied on, but that's a testament to the SU receivers and not about West's talent. West can — and, I believe, will — be special, but the rejuvenated Marcus Sales — Van Chew — Alec Lemon trio will see the majority of passes this season (barring injuries, knock on wood). Expect flashes here and there in 2011, but 2012 is when Jerrod West becomes a Cuse-hold name, write it down.
How He Got Here: West committed to Stanford before his senior season, but didn't make the academic cut. The poor kid was forced to reevaluate his scholarship prospects late in the year, and West found himself thinking he'd attend Mercersberg, Pennsylvania's Mercersburg Academy. He hoped that after a season, he'd luck out and get to catch passes from Andrew Luck (bad joke).
The Cardinal may have renewed their interest, if not for Doug Marrone, who swooped in and snatched the former All-State wideout before the nerds or Mercerburgians could blink.
Scouts/Rivals Said That: West was a three-star recruit. Take a look at the Scout.com report:
"Has very good hands and while he isn't a burner, his route-running really makes up for a lack of breakaway speed. Very willing blocker downfield that leaves it all on the field."
Gotta think that part about blocking has a big part to do with his roster spot. Other than Stanford and Syracuse, West had offers from Cincinnati, Maryland, Missouri, Northwestern, Pittsburgh, and Vanderbilt. Not a bad grab.
Money Quote: Here's West after a 3-catch, 43 yard outing at this year's spring game:
"I started off a little slow because I had to get used to playing football again...but as soon as I got it rolling, like maybe by the fifth practice, I was looking really good. I'm trying to build on those good things."
I think he did a bang-up job of building on some good things, considering Dave Rahme called him a silky smooth Marcus Sales clone...with more size.
Links of Wonder: If you have a fancy insider pass to Scout, read up on this article about West. If not, I'll save you the trouble: they call him a perfect fit for SU.
What Doug Marrone Thinks: Can't find much of what HCDM has said about West, but I'll stay vigilant. If one of you finds something good, I expect a tweet (@nicktoneytweets, in case you were wondering).
Interesting Nugget O'Interest: West was a three-sport athlete at Liberty: he lettered in basketball (more on that later) and track & field. He was a helluva high jumper, going to states in both his junior and senior seasons. The senior season must've been hard for West because of the whole Stanford fiasco, but it shows the kid can be cool under pressure.
Let Us Get A Good Look Atchya: As promised, here's a West dunkfest. Here's hoping he can Antonio Gates himself some Nassib passes in 2011: