You knew that the Syracuse Orange were going to be very slim on defensive end depth this season after dismissing Qaadir Sheppard and Amir Ealey. Well, it looks like one solution might come from within the roster.
Making the move to defensive end #LetsRide— Trey Dunkelberger (@T11D_) February 18, 2016
Trey Dunkleberger will move from tight end to defensive end this spring into fall, to help out a position that sorely needs the extra bodies. "Dunk" was several spots down the depth chart at tight end, but with the offense shifting away from that position as a focus (at least based on Dino Babers's previous schemes), perhaps this was the best way to get the big, athletic player on the field. Trey played in the season opener against Rhode Island last year and was one of many puzzling, burned redshirts throughout last fall's campaign. He sat out the rest of the season, in part due to a concussion.
So Syracuse now has one defensive end that's seen the field at the collegiate level, even if it was for just a fleeting few moments last fall. Dunkleberger, who's entering his junior year, will join fellow returning players Jake Pickard and Kenny Carter at the position. New additions for 2016 Jaquwan Nelson, Kendall Coleman and Josh Black are highly likely to compete for playing time as well. There's also the chance that Delaware State grad transfer Gabe Sherrod joins the Orange and immediately competes for one of two starting roles.
Also in position change news, Antwan Cordy announced that he'd be switching his spot in the secondary to strong safety. That's not necessarily a major switch, however. While he was recruited as a cornerback originally, he started all 12 games at SS last season. I guess now it's official. The junior is very likely to lead the team's secondary, which is badly in need of a rebound year. Despite SU's struggles against the pass, however, Cordy was still a force. He tallied 12 tackles for loss in 2015, and also collected two interceptions and two fumble recoveries.
These may not be the last of the team's switches as Babers continues to mold what this roster can be for 2016. Obviously defensive end is still a position of need, as is defensive tackle (and maybe some others too).