DeVante McFarlane has done it all for his team thus far in 2011, playing quarterback, running back and linebacker. He acknowledges that he will not be a thrower at the next level, but defense is not out of the question just yet. If running back doesn't pan-out, safety is the likely landing spot for the 6-foot-1, 195-pound athlete.
"I like to roam and intercept passes and coming up and hitting people," he said.
McFarlane has been good on the defensive end, but he continues to present a bigger threat as a runner. Through four games, he has 455 yards on the ground to go along with 12 touchdowns. He prefers to lineup in the backfield, and one of the selling points that led to his commitment to Syracuse was the fact that coach Doug Marrone said he would get his shot in the backfield first.
"I'm a balanced running back," McFarlane said. "I just need a little seam, (so) once I get to the secondary it's hard to tackle me."
It's tough for second-level defenders to bring him down now, and he plans to elevate his game once the season is over.
"I'm going to run track and be doing more speed training (in the offseason)," he added.
McFarlane's versatility and success has already garnered plenty of offers, but he is picking up more interest as the season progresses. Vanderbilt had representatives at his last game, and Georgia Tech and Maryland have jumped into the mix as well, though neither ACC school has offered just yet. McFarlane's most recent offer came from the University of Massachusetts. That offer adds to his previous scholarships from Syracuse, Vanderbilt, Buffalo and Kent State.
Even with all the attention, McFarlane remains on track to sign with SU, and he is scheduled to take his official visit the school in December.