We're counting down every SU football player from Chandler Jones (#99) to Phil Thomas (#1). Keep track of every player profile right here.
Next up on your Orange-Man Orientation, #16, Keenan Hale.
Position: Wide Receiver
Hometown: Conyers, GA
High School: The McCallie School
2010 Stats: Hale is a freshman, so, none.
2011 Projections: Hale has been making his mark in camp all month long. With Marcus Sales out and Alec Lemon bothered by an injury, our young receivers are being asked to step up and, among them, Hale has. He might not be on Jeremiah Kobena's level yet, but he's got some playing time in him, I'm feeling.
How'd He Get Here?: Hale had ATH written all over him from the day he got to high school. An accomplished basketball player and track athlete as well as football player, it wasn't too much of surprise to hear there was interest. Arkansas, Vanderbilt and Samford offered and there was reportedly interest from Georgia Tech, Air Force, Duke, LSU and Tennessee.
Hale, however, loved Syracuse's enthusiasm for him ("When they first called they said that had seen film on me, which weirded me out," Hale said. "I didn’t even know they knew about me."). He visited SU during the Pittsburgh game and fell in love with the campus and the coaching staff.
Scouts/Rivals Said:. Two stars all the way.
Money Quote: "Syracuse was the only one that had offered," he said. "In talking with [Syracuse] coaches I felt it would be a good fit for me. I discussed it with my parents. I wasn’t getting a lot of major attention, and the season was half over. If something else had come along I might have considered it, but I also knew if I got hurt I definitely wasn’t going to get any other offers."
Beer of Choice: There is a microbrewery in my neighborhood called Hale's Ales. I promise you that, anytime Keenan scored a touchdown, I will chug one of their tasty bottles of suds. And tweet it.
Links of Wonder: Here's a bio piece on Hale from this time last year. Hale says his game-day tradition was waking up at 6 a.m. to go to McCallie’s Spears Stadium and lying down on turf at the 50-yard line. I'm all for it at the Carrier Dome, as long as DOC Gross gets up the unlock the doors that early.
Doug Marrone Thinks: "I see these (first-year) kids being very close," Marrone said."In my conversations with them, a couple of the kids have told me, 'Everything's great and everyone's getting along very well.' I'm excited about that. That's an important factor."
Interesting Nugget O'Interest: The state champion high jumper is likely to compete also for the Syracuse track program, no word on whether or not he's officially doing that.
Let Us Get A Good Look Atchya: Here's a video of Keenan talking about his decision pre-Syracuse. He says he's looking for "academics and a place I can play right away." Done and done!