Five years from now, the Class of 2014 offensive recruit we're going to miss most will be...
John Cassillo: A.J. Long, who's been the poster boy for the 2014 class for nearly a full year. No, he's not guaranteed to start this coming season or ever, but I have a feeling we'll be dealing with a very special player when he finally gets the nod to be under center.
Jared Smith: I guess, the obvious answers are either wide receiver Corey Cooper or quarterback A.J. Long. Lots of recruiting people like Long to step into the role of "next quarterback in line," while Cooper could be the best skilled position guy of the group. However, at this point, do we really know?
Andrew Pregler: It has to be A.J. Long right? He’s the hyped up QB who wants to start NOW and we all learned that the starting QB job is completely fluid based on performance. I don’t think Hunt is going to lose his job to Long but he should redshirt and develop into a very good QB.
Sean Farrell: I’ll give the nod to A.J. Long, just barely over Alin Edouard. I really like both of these QBs and either one has a chance to flourish in this system. Edouard can run the ball so well and Scott Shafer is moving in the direction of dual-threat quarterbacks. The way he talked about Russell Wilson in his press conference on Wednesday makes that pretty clear. But ultimately, it seems like Long is a more polished passer and his impressive touchdown-to-interception ratios back that up.
Sean Keeley: The smart money has to be on A.J. Long. He seems to have the inside track on being the quarterback of the future. Just like Terrel Hunt, he's arriving just in time to spend two years learning behind the incumbent and to sharpen his competitive skills with the other back-ups.
Five years from now, the Class of 2014 defensive recruit we're going to miss most will be...
JC: I'm picking Cordell Hudson, partially on optimism. The kid was well regarded as a recruit, but still seems like he wants to prove something. In a secondary that's desperate for some help, he may get a shot to jump right in. And under the guidance of up-and-coming guys like Durell Eskridge and Julian Whigham, he has a shot to be special.
JS: Obvious answer is Wayne Williams just because his size as a defensive tackle, but I like the hard-nosyness of linebackers Colton Moskal and Zaire Franklin, who maybe worked just as hard on the recruiting trail for SU.
AP: I’m going to go Colton Moskal. He seems like a Scott Shafer kid in that he’s overcome so much personally, become a stronger person and player from it all and even has his own slogan to compete with hard-nosed. (W.A.R. like mentality) Also, SU has always had a strong linebacker core under Shafer and Moskal should fit in nicely.
SF: The only defensive end of the class – Chris Slayton. It’s all about rushing the quarterback in Shafer’s defense. Give me a 6-4, 256 end on the line everyday of the week and twice on Sunday. Slayton had nine sacks in his senior season and has a vertical leap of 29.2 inches. Other offers to him included Michigan State, Missouri, Nebraska, and Miami so Syracuse is in good company.
SK: Shafer went out of his way to mention that they weren't even going to bother recruiting a defensive end unless they were able to target a guy who was above and beyond. Well, Chris Slayton showed up and they went after him. I'm going to err on the side of these guys knowing what they're doing and seeing something pretty special in the guy.
Of the two-star & below recruits, which one will blow up and become the biggest star out of everyone?
JC: This might seem to fly in the face of my previous response, but I really like what Antwan Cordy brings to the table. He's got the quickness and strength to match any defensive back on the roster already. Now we just have to wait to see if he can bring it all together on the field.
JS: Well, out of the recruits I did, defensive back Lamar Dawson, who was listed a three-star by some sites but a two-star by Rivals, seems like a guy we all can like and get behind. His story is great and, for some reason, good stories have been a stepping stone for success for Syracuse players in the past.
AP: Adly Enoicy is a big bodied WR that could easily be converted into a TE with some bulk if he doesn’t have the speed or hands for a WR. The Orange haven’t had a consistent big target at WR for Hunt this year and is Enoicy develops well, he’ll be an impact player on size alone.
SF: You have to go with the guy who promises to bring "the swagger back to SwaggerCuse", don’t you? That’s Wayne Williams. Do I realistically think that a player who spent time at the junior college level at ASA College will become a productive player? No. But if I have to take a flier on someone, my choice is the player who is simply the biggest. He’s a 6-4, 335 pound beast on the defensive line. It will be interesting to see what Shafer and Co. can do with him.
SK: Syracuse tends to have situations with RBs and WRs where the highly-recruited guys don't pan out quite as well as the one behind them. PTG was considered a better get than Jerome Smith. Averin Collier was supposed to be better than both of them. Lavar Lobdell was considered a big get while Alec Lemon was a decent recruit. So considering the glut of wide receivers we have, I'm going to look at Adly Enoicy as the one who will surprise us all when it's all said and done. He's got the speed and the hands to make a solid four-year impact.
Of the three/four-star recruits, which one is most likely to fizzle out early?
JC: I hate picking any of these kids to fizzle out, since it's so early, but if I have to go with one, it's whoever loses the QB battle to either back up or take the job (read: highly unlikely) from Terrel Hunt. Went with Long as a breakout offensive player up top, so that means this will be Alin Edouard. Very much hope the final answer is "none of these guys."
JS: My biggest question mark is with OL Denzel Ward. On paper, everything looks great because he's a monster at 6-foot-8, however, the kid is a bit of a drama queen. He flipped high schools seemingly a million times, did the same thing during the recruiting process and wanted all the attention on NSD as he kept Tweeting links about press conference. I just don't like the vibe he initially gave out.
AP: I’ll go Alin Edouard. He’s another 3 star QB coming in but Long has dominated the discussion and Edouard could be the next Charlie Loeb and be stuck in the eternal clipboard vortex or transfer to Stony Brook.
SF: Only out of opportunity limitations, I’m going to go with Ervin Phillips at the running back position. George Morris and Devante McFarlane have a stronghold over that spot for the next few years. Phillips is a good pass-catching back, but he’s only 180 pounds so I worry about how much he could be used in blocking situations. He just strikes me as another Adonis-Ameem Moore case.
SK: The easiest way to go is to go with a quarterback. And since we're all pretty high on A.J. Long, I'm going to say Alin Edouard. He's three-stars just like Long but the early bets seem to point away from him. Don't be too surprised to see him end up in another position (or school) looking for an opportunity.
The Class of 2014 recruit whose Twitterfeed you're dreading following for the next four years...
JC: I don't follow any of the football or basketball players' feeds because everyone else does it already and I those follow spots are valuable (between work, blogging and beer, it gets quite crowded over there). Juwan Dowels looks like he's a big fan of selfies, so if I were following all of these kids, I'd probably dread his feed the most.
JS: Denzel Ward because of the points I noted earlier.
AP: None. I make a list and don’t follow. Besides, I’m not in the "old man" twitter stage yet. I’ve still got another year as an annoying college student!
SF: None. I don’t follow many athletes, so this doesn’t have much of an impact on me.
SK: The keys to having a really awful college athlete Twitterfeed are: 1) An almost impressive lack of self-awareness. 2) A misunderstanding of the definition of 'humble.' 3) Bible quotes, generic motivational quotes and generic observations about women a-plenty. 4) Retweets. Lots and lots of retweets. With all of that in mind, I'm looking at you, Denzel Ward and Zaire Franklin. I'm already regretting my decisions to follow...
The Class of 2014 recruit who will have the biggest immediate impact this September is...
JC: Name any of the defensive backs. Named both Cordell Hudson and Antwan Cordy above, and I think that still stands. The secondary needs help and at least one of those players is likely to see a good deal of playing time this year. Going with Hudson at the moment, since I think he's a bit more polished (but not by much).
AP: Any one of the WR’s who separate themselves. We thought Wayne Morgan was going to be a freshman impact #FactorBack but it didn’t work out that way. But what we do know is that the WR core isn’t the strongest and anyone who can play, will play. At least one of the freshman wideouts can have an Estime like impact on special teams or in a 4 wide set.
SF: Adly Enoicy. I hate to keep reciting height and weight totals, but 6-5, 200 pounds speaks for itself. I really like how he could fit into the receiving corp over the next few seasons. Enoicy is the big and strong possession reciver, Brisly Estime is the sneaky speed guy and Ashton Broyld is a combination of the two.
SK: Syracuse has a lot of depth at wide receiver but not a lot of star wattage. If K.J. Williams or Corey Cooper can step up and make an immediate impact, we might be looking at one of them seeing legitimate numbers on gameday. Perhaps even on kickoffs if not on offense.
Syracuse's starting quarterback in 2016 is…
JC: A.J. Long. Once Hunt finishes off the final two years of a stellar reign as signal-caller, he'll finally pass the torch to Long, who by then will be a redshirt sophomore (much like Hunt was when he took over the job). It means Edouard gets tossed to the side, but these guys knew this could happen when they both signed with SU.
JS: I'll say A.J. Long. Looks like this is the track Syracuse wants to go with its quarterbacks under HCSS and Long seems to be the next right fit for the job.
AP: I’m going to stick to A.J. Long. He’ll have waited, know the offense and has the pedigree to hold the reins while Shafer brings in a 4 star guy to replace him.
SF: A.J. Long – for all the reasons we’ve described. He’ll have time to get comfortable with the Syracuse system and know what to expect what Hunt eventually passes the torch.
SK: Keeping in mind that we already have Mitch Kimble and Austin Wilson on the roster, I'll go with A.J. Long. Who knows what the future will bring for the two guys already here. And who knows what will happen with Long and Edouards, too. But based on what I know right now (which isn't much), Long is the guy I'll place a bet on.
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