The Syracuse football program got some awfully good news this morning, when starting left tackle Sean Hickey announced (via Twitter) that he'd be returning for his senior season. Hickey's largely considered the Orange's most talented lineman (or maybe even player on the team) in terms of NFL prospects, and he was seen as one of the top 20 OTs in the entire 2014 NFL Draft pool. That's now on hold for another season, which is a big deal for the Orange.
As you might remember, these five starters on the offensive line started every game this year, and now with Hickey coming back, that means the group will lose just one player (center Macky MacPherson). Such a veteran line could be a big part of Syracuse's offensive success next year, especially since bruising halfback Jerome Smith is turning pro himself.
Again, we don't want to get ahead of ourselves, but next season is looking mighty nice on paper. Syracuse loses just three offensive starters (MacPherson, Smith and Beckett Wales -- who missed a good chunk of 2013 anyway), and hopefully just four starters on defense (Jay Bromley, Marquis Spruill, Ri'Shard Anderson and Jeremi Wilkes). The Orange also have a more manageable schedule than they did in 2013, so things are certainly looking up.