We’re a little over a week away from the start of another Syracuse Orange football season. Training camp is winding down, the depth chart is shaping up and the coaching staff is starting to prep for Colgate.
While the Orange should make easy work of their lowly FCS opponent, who won just three games last year, many players will compete with their jobs on the line. Plus, a positive showing from an unexpected source could allow for more playing time as the season progresses.
Here are three players to keep an eye out for that may play themselves into bigger roles starting against the Raiders.
#23, RB Ike Daniels
Entering as a top-45 running back out of high school, Daniels has showcased his electrifying speed and agility all throughout camp. Also an effective pass catcher, the Stafford, Virginia product has all the tools to become a three-down back. The freshman is listed as third on the running back depth chart behind LeQuint Allen and Juwaun Price. Still, Daniels could solidify himself as Allen’s backup by the end of the season if he takes advantage of his opportunities. Expect him to see some action towards the second half against Colgate.
#21, DB Bralyn Oliver
Over the past few weeks, the redshirt sophomore transfer has gelled into an intriguing option at safety for the Orange. Oliver recently matched up with Oronde Gadsden II in one-on-one drills, and free safety Alijah Clark referred to Oliver as “a diamond in the rough.” With veteran Justin Barron locked in for starting reps, it’ll be interesting to see where Oliver slides into the Orange defense. Plus, if history repeats itself and the defense becomes decimated with injuries, expect the Louisville transfer to make an immediate impact sooner rather than later.
#92, DL Rashard Perry
After a monster career at Bennett High School, the Buffalo native has lived up to the hype so far in camp. Defensive tackle Kevon Darton called out Perry as one of the guys who “gets better every day” and “can definitely be helpful this season.” With a solid 6’3, 278-pound frame, his raw athleticism could get him in the latter half of the game against Colgate and other non-conference opponents. An experienced d-line might take away some reps initially, but the pass-rusher will have chances to make a good impression in his first year in orange and blue.
What do you think about this list? Who else could make a statement in the Salt City?