When you are in the month of June and are talking about college football, you are, well...speculating. And any speculation that goes in your team's favor is a good thing.
So it's good news that Syracuse Orange WR Steve Ishmael and LB Zaire Franklin have been named to the Athlon Sports preseason All-ACC fourth team. Franklin led the Orange defense with 81 tackles for the Orange last season while Ishmael finished fifth in the ACC with seven receiving touchdowns.
Since this point of the year is all about speculations and expectations when it comes to college football, I believe it's safe to say the expectations are high for these two players.
Steve Ishmael is without a doubt the number one receiver on this football team. Expectations are for Ishmael to have a breakout season and be a conference leader. While there are many factors that go into a receiver's numbers aside from the talent of the receiver himself, Dino Babers' offense should be up-tempo enough to get him open, if for no other reason than SU should be running more plays than it ever has before.
And speaking of breakout seasons, Zaire Franklin is poised to do the same on defense. Voted the first team sophomore captain in over 70 years, Franklin is both a vocal leader and a physical beast for an Orange defense that needs physicality.
Both of these players may very well be playing on Sundays when their Syracuse careers finish up, and they should be special talents to see in the Dome this upcoming season.