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Syracuse Football Recruiting: As Dead Period Ends, Recruits Plan Visits

Twenty recruits have scheduled visits to Syracuse over the next three weekends.

Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Today marks the official end of the recruiting dead period that began December 14. Between now and National Signing Day on Wednesday, February 3, at least twenty recruits are scheduled to visit the Orange so far. Let's take a look at who will be visiting which weekends and where the Orange stand with each target.

Weekend of January 15:

Andrew Armstrong, OLB, 6'2", 215 lbs. Cardinal Mooney High School, Youngstown Ohio: Armstrong has Syracuse in his top three schools, along with Wake Forest and Cincinnati. It does not appear that Armstrong has scheduled visits to the other two schools, yet, which could mean he intends to commit to the Orange this weekend if everything goes well.

Drew Beesley, DE, 6'3", 225 lbs., De La Salle Collegiate High School, Warren, Mich.: Beesley, along with Armstrong, is a former Bowling Green committed, who took an interest in Syracuse after Coach Babers was hired. Beesley also has offers from Toledo, Central Michigan and Eastern Michigan. Given the staff's previously relationship with Beesley, Syracuse is considered the heavy favorite.

Sam Brodner, RB, 5'10", 210 lbs. Glenbard West High School, Glen Ellyn, Ill.: Once Brodner de-committed from Vanderbilt, Syracuse offered almost immediately. Illinois and Wisconsin are Brodner's other two top suitors. After visiting Syracuse this weekend, the Illinois Gatorade player of the year will visit Champaign next weekend and Madison the following weekend.

Cedric Byrd, WR, 5'9", 145 lbs. Narbonne High School, Harbor City, Calif.: Byrd is among a trio of Narbonne High School players visiting this weekend. Byrd does not have a Syracuse offer and he is significantly undersized for the Power 5 or even the FBS level of play. He will be visiting with targets DeVaughn Cooper and Sean Riley.

Devon Clarke, S, 6'3", 185, Osceola High School, Kissimmee, Fla.: After de-committing from Oregon State, Syracuse had long been the favorite for Clarke, so much so that he tried to verbally commit last summer. At that time, Shafer and staff had higher priorities and asked Clarke to wait. Clarke has patiently waited and maintained his interest in the Orange. Luckily, the new staff has re-engaged with Clarke as his size would be an asset in the Tampa 2 defense. He will be on campus this weekend, and a commitment is likely this weekend if he has a "commitable" offer. UMass is Clarke's strongest suitor if he does not receive an offer from Syracuse before National Signing Day.

DeVaughn Cooper, WR, 5'11", 180 lbs. Narbonne High School, Harbor City, Calif.: DeVaughn Cooper is committed to the University of Arizona, but his teammate and fellow UA commit Sean Riley was recently asked to grey shirt, prompting Cooper and Riley to look elsewhere. He received an offer from the Orange earlier this month. He also has offers from Arizona State, Michigan, Colorado,  Kansas, Washington & Washington State.

Sean Riley, RB/WR, 5'9", 165 lbs. Narbonne High School, Harbor City, Calif.: Riley is a speedy offensive playmaker who is committed to Arizona along with Cooper. However, UA recently asked Riley to greyshirt, so he and Cooper are exploring other opportunities, including visiting Syracuse this weekend. Riley also has offers from San Diego State, Wyoming and Utah.

Weekend of January 22:

Joshua Black, DE, 6'3", 235 lbs. Harlem High School, Machesney Park, Ill.: Black is one of Syracuse's top priorities at defensive end, probably the biggest position of need for the Orange. Black currently is committed to Illinois and also has offers from Toledo, Ball State and Bowling Green. Black is visiting with fellow Illinois commit Kentrail Moran. Syracuse is Black's only scheduled visit, and his decision will likely come down to staying with the Fighting Illini or flipping to the Orange.

Desmond Fitzpatrick, WR, 6'2", 190 lbs. Waterford Mott High School, Waterford, Mich.: Fitzpatrick is one of the most highly rated prospect Syracuse is pursuing. Fitzpatrick has an impressive offer sheet, including Michigan, Minnesota, Arizona, and Nebraska. Other than Syracuse, Fitzpatrick will also been visiting Mississippi State this weekend and Louisville the weekend of January 29th.

Evan Foster, S, 6'1" 190 lbs., West Bloomfield High School, West Bloomfield, Mich.: Foster is another former Bowling Green commit who de-committed at the beginning of December after Coach Babers was hired. Foster visited Purdue the weekend of December 11th. Foster reportedly has a good relationship with Defensive Backs Coach Nick Monroe who coached Foster's brother at Bowling Green.

Jawon Hamilton, RB 5'9", 185 lbs., South Dade High School, Miami: Hamilton has a top four that includes Syracuse, Central Florida, Louisville and Florida Atlantic University. Hamilton will be using the next three weeks to visit three of those schools, including Syracuse. Hamilton is friends with current Orange safety Antwan Cordy and spoke with Cordy about potentially attending Syracuse.

Sam Heckel, OT 6'5", 265 lbs., Waukesha West, Waukesha, Wisc.: Heckel has been committed to the Orange since June of last year. Heckel received an in-home visit from members of the new staff as soon as they took over the program, indicating that Heckel was high priority. Hopefully his official visit will seal his commitment to the Orange.

Kentrail Moran, RB, 5'10", 190 lbs., O'Fallon High School, O'Fallon, Ill.: Moran is believed to be one of Syracuse's top targets. He is currently committed to the University of Illinois and also has offers from Louisville, Iowa, Indiana, and Northern Illinois. Wisconsin has not offered yet, but could also swoop in depending on what happens with some of their other running back targets, including Orange target Sam Brodner.

Jaquwan Nelson, DE, 6'4", 230 lbs., Fort Lauderdale High School, Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Nelson has been committed to the University of Miami since March of last year. Nelson was previously recruited by Syracuse Defensive Backs Coach Nick Monroe when Monroe was at Bowling Green. Monroe has picked up right where he left of with Nelson since being hired at Syracuse. Nelson will be on campus to see if Syracuse can flip him before National Signing Day.

Stewart Reese, OG, 6'7", 335 lbs., Fort Pierce Central High School, Fort Pierce, Fla.: Reese is a massive offensive line prospect. He also has offers from Florida State, LSU, Nebraska, Mississippi and South Carolina. Florida State is considered the favorite for Reese and Reese will be visiting Tallahassee this weekend.

Airon Servias, OT 6'5" 265 lbs., Ashwaubenon High School, Green Bay, Wisc.: Servais is the second committed offensive lineman visiting the weekend of January 22nd. Servais was the first Syracuse verbal commit after Coach Babers took over the program. Servais and Heckel illustrate what the new staff is looking for in Offensive Tackles: Tall, long, lean athletes.

Rashad Smith, OLB/S, 6'2" 185 lbs., Homestead High School, Homestead, Fla.: Smith is currently committed to Florida Atlantic University. Smith also has offers from Bowling Green and Temple. The lure of playing Power 5 football may be too much for Smith to give up by staying committing to FAU, whom he committed to back in March of last year. Defensive Backs Coach Nick Monroe has been recruiting Smith since Monroe was at Bowling Green.

Weekend of January 29:

Adrian Killins, RB, 5'8", 175 lbs., Mainland High School, Daytona Beach, Fla.: Killins recently committed to Scott Frost and the UCF Knights at the beginning of December. He also has offers from Power 5 schools such as Miami, West Virginia, Louisville, Kansas and Iowa State.

Armunz Mathews, CB, 5'11", 180 lbs., North Florida Christian High School, Tallahassee, Fla.: Mathews is a South Florida commit who gave his verbal back in June. He was recruited by Ron Dugans who recently left USF to join the University of Miami coaching staff. Mathews also has offers from Louisville, Arizona, Missouri and Kentucky among others. With the de-commitment of Monquavion Brinson, Syracuse has another slot at cornerback available in this class.

Lindsey Scott, Jr., QB, 5'11", 205 lbs., Zachary High School, Zachary, La.: Since committing to the Orange back in October, Scott's recruiting has picked up significantly. Scott has received an offer from hometown Tulane, although new coach Willie Fritz's run-heavy option offense would not highlight Scott's passing ability. Scott also has reportedly received interest from Texas A&M although he has not been offered yet. Scott's visit will be an opportunity to sure-up his commitment to the Orange.

Other Potential Visitors:

Kelvin Harmon, WR, 6'3" 190 lbs., Palmyra High School, Palmyra, N.J.: Harmon, along with Desmond Fitzpatrick, is one of the highest rated Syracuse targets. Harmon is considering setting up a visit for the weekend of January 22nd. Harmon was committed to South Carolina, but re-opened his recruiting at the end of the Gamecock's season.

Devon Modster, QB, 6'2" 215 lbs. Tesoro High School, Rancho Margarita, Calif.:  Modster de-committed from Arizona on December 31st and promptly received a Syracuse offer. However, UCLA, Maryland and Oklahoma all have reportedly gotten involved since then. UCLA is considered the favorite in the clubhouse and Modster will be visiting their this weekend. If Modster does not commit to UCLA this weekend, Syracuse may still have a shot.

Jerrion Nelson, DE, 6'2", 260 lbs. Battle High School, Columbia, Mo.: Nelson has a top four of Syracuse, Iowa State, Purdue and Tulsa. Nelson has not schedule an official visit yet; however reportedly will schedule in January. Nelson said Iowa State was "sticking out" to him because his relationship to Coach Campbell which began while Campbell was at Toledo.