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National Signing Day: Recapping Syracuse football’s 2020 offensive signees

Syracuse added 11 players on Dino’s favorite side of the ball.

NCAA Football: Wake Forest at Syracuse Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Syracuse Orange football’s 2020 recruiting class is all wrapped up — barring late additions this spring, anyway. And though most of the players in this year’s class actually signed on the dotted line back in December, National Signing Day made us want to remind everyone who’s in the door on both sides of the ball.

Between December and Wednesday, SU added a grand total of 11 offensive players. Those names:

Damien Alford, WR

Alford’s looked even better in Florida since heading down from Canada, and his size — 6-foot-5 — certainly jumps off the page right away. While SU’s been able to get quick receivers and some solid possession guys, the last few classes haven’t necessarily brought in a ton of BIG wideouts in the same mold as guys like Amba Etta-Tawo and Jamal Custis. Alford could become a capable deep threat and one that could physically overpower most downfield defenders with a little more weight. Certainly one to watch next summer.

Garth Barclay, OT

Thanks to the experience returning to the Syracuse offensive line next season Barclay will have time to get acclimated to the Orange strength and conditioning program. He certainly has the ideal height and wingspan for the tackle position and will be an interesting prospect to watch develop.

Steven Mahar, TE

The Orange still have both experienced senior Aaron Hackett and emerging threat Luke Benson at the tight end position for 2020, meaning Mahar is a strong candidate to redshirt. But we saw Syracuse use both TEs regularly throughout games in the back half of 2019 and one would imagine Benson will get even more targets next year. Once Hackett graduates, Mahar good become a contributor for the Orange rather quickly, though he may have to compete with fellow 2020 signee Justin Barron if the coaches put him in that position group.

Maximilian Mang, TE

We knew virtually nothing about Mang until he signed in December, but the massive — 6-foot-7, 253 lbs. — tight end figures to be a matchup nightmare for teams down the line, and a very capable blocker. He has time to get acclimated to the speed and skill level of the American game, but once he does, look out.

Dillon Markiewicz, QB

A player who I don’t know if we’ll know the extent of for a while, behind Tommy DeVito, but Markiewicz put up a gaudy stat line in Texas 5A during his senior season. He passed for 4,187 yards and 45 touchdowns, with only 6 interceptions on the campaign. Not bad for a quarterback who just recently picked up speed in the recruiting cycle. Likely, he redshirts this season and can look to contribute down the road. He has a frame to build on at this level, so we’ll have to see how he develops.

Jacobian Morgan, QB

For a player that’s only been a quarterback for a year, the tape shows Morgan has a decent ability to throw the ball downfield with accuracy, and could display some mobility. He’s tall and could be a bit of a “diamond in the rough” with some time. It’s difficult to see him hitting the field in the next couple years barring a complete disaster. But in time, Dino could have an interesting passer on his hands.

Trebor Pena, WR

The Orange are pretty stacked at receiver, so I don’t think Trebor sees the field much his freshman year. That being said, the new redshirt rule does allow us to see some faces a few times, and Pena has the size and make up of a traditional slot receiver the Orange lacked this year. An impressive camp could lead to 4 games of a shot there plus some special teams work, before settling into those roles long term.

Mark Petry, OT

Petry comes in with JUCO experience and the sort of size (6-foot-5, 250 pounds) — that could plug in as a depth add right away from the Orange. Given last year’s offensive line struggles, you can never have enough players at the position, and he could very well find himself in the rotation should injuries (hopefully not) strike once again this fall.

Sean Tucker, RB

Tucker will fit into a solid list of returning players, so he’s likely to be able to redshirt and get a little more acclimated to the Orange system. With Abdul Adams, Jawhar Jordan, Jarveon Howard and Markenzy Pierre coming back, there won’t be too many carries to go around for the true freshman, but he may get some run in a blowout or two with the still relatively new redshirt rules.

Marlowe Wax, RB

Wax played on both sides of the ball in high school, and collected an impressive 29 tackles for loss as a senior linebacker. For now, at least, he’s slated to be a running back for the Orange though, and there he rushed for over 1,300 yards and 18 scores this fall. He’d also come to campus as the second biggest halfback on the roster by weight, potentially providing some needed power in short yardage situations. Given the number of running backs on the roster right now, he’ll get time to develop, but we could eventually have a quality between-the-tackles runner on our hands.

Ja’Vontae Williams, WR

The more Florida speed we can add at the receiver position the better, and Williams certainly fits the bill. He’s also the sort of wideout that can catch passes in various parts of the field, with some good size at nearly 200 pounds. Since he’s one of a handful of players who intends to enroll in January, the extra time with the playbook could pay some major dividends. But with an extensive list of players at the position already, it’ll be a tough depth chart to crack for at least a year.