While it may have started out as a long shot, the Syracuse Orange had worked their way to be favorites to land a commitment from 4-star offensive guard Stewart Reese. Then, unfortunately, Mississippi State became the clubhouse favorite following an in-home visit last week and the talented Florida product never looked back.
Reese announced his commitment to the Bulldogs today at 2:15 p.m. ET, listing Syracuse as the other finalist.
Considering his size (6-foot-5, 330 pounds), he certainly appeared ready to step right in for an Orange squad that could always use some more help on the line. But it just wasn't meant to be.
After Josh White picked Georgia Tech (SU never offered), Reese's decision and Adrian Killin's comments that heavily indicate he's staying at UCF, it doesn't look like there are many options left for the Orange to make an addition before National Signing Day. The class currently stands at 21 for Dino Babers and his staff, who've done an awesome job overhauling the class of 2016 in a very short amount of time.
We'll see if any other names are late across the line on either end. So far, just three players (all on campus already: Rex Culpepper, Kenneth Ruff, Moe Neal) have signed their letters of intent, leaving 18 still to go. For the time being, the committed name to watch is defensive end Jaquwan Nelson, who just got done with a trip down to Georgia.
Nothing to panic about. You can't sign EVERY kid that ends up on campus after all. But just hammers home the point that recruiting's a very inexact science and nothing's guaranteed.