CNY/NNY/S. Tier: Recent history says SU football just fine with lower-rated recruits
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SYRACUSE, N.Y. - For all the hype surrounding high school prospects' star ratings, the Syracuse football program has a lot of evidence that lower-rated can really just mean under-rated.
Syracuse's incoming class is ranked by one scouting service as being 13th-best out of 14 teams in the ACC. But to put that in perspective, Rivals.com rated these former SU players two stars out of five when they were high school seniors: Tanard Jackson, Jameel McClain, Tony Fiammetta, Mike Williams, and Arthur and Chandler Jones. Each of them is active in the NFL. Four standouts who just completed their Orange careers were also mere two-star prospects: Ryan Nassib and Alec Lemon, each of whom set multiple program records, Justin Pugh, and Shamarko Thomas. All four were invited on Thursday to show their skills in the NFL Draft Combine later this month.
As for the higher-rated recruits? Among the four-star players who have committed to the Orange in recent years, Larry McClain left the program before ever playing a game, Lavar Lobdell only caught one touchdown pass in four years, Andrey Baskin never even enrolled at SU due to poor academics, and Averin Collier was barely used as a freshman and then also became an academic casualty.