Is Syracuse A Possible New Home For Penn State RB Curtis Dukes?

STATE COLLEGE, PA - OCTOBER 8: Curtis Dukes #26 of the Penn State Nittany Lions carries the ball against the Iowa Hawkeyes during the game on October 8, 2011 at Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania. The Nittany Lions defeated the Hawkeyes 13-3. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

You had to figure somehow, someway, the Syracuse Orange football program, given it's proximity and shared recruiting base, was going to show up in the Penn St. Nittany Lion football player transfer discussion sooner or later.

And so it begins with former Indian River High School and Syracuse recruiting target Curtis Dukes telling Chris Wagner at the Post-Standard he would be open to the idea of transferring to Syracuse.

"It would be nice to play in front of a home crowd," said Dukes, who helped lead Indian River, near Watertown, to a 50-game Section X winning streak during his career, which concluded in 2008 when he ran for 1,168 yards (13.4 average) and 16 touchdowns. "It’s the reason why Syracuse was so high for me. It’s a good program and a great distance (away from home)."

Dukes finished third on the team last season with 237 yards and a TD on 41 carries (5.8 YPC).His best performance was a 60-yard day against Iowa.

Dukes, who redshirted as a freshman, would have two years of eligibility remaining, including this upcoming season. He sat out spring ball due to academic issues and was not listed on the post-spring depth chart.

Dukes' high school coach Cory Marsell said he has spoken to Dukes and the possibility of transferring to SU came up. He also mentioned the irony in Dukes' reasoning to go to Penn State over Syracuse initially, which was in part based on the instability of the Syracuse program on the heels of the Greg Robinson Era.

Dukes was rated a four-star prospect by Scout and three stars by Rivals. He had offers from Pittsburgh and Buffalo as well as SU.

There's no timetable for this kind of decision, though I would imagine Dukes is keeping a close eye on what starter Silas Redd does. If Redd decides to transfer, that moves Dukes up the PSU depth chart in a hurry.

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