2014 Recruiting: Position Needs

The Orange staff has been recruiting for 2014 for weeks. With National Signing Day over, CuseNation.com takes an in-depth look at what positions will be the biggest targets.

With Syracuse's 2013 class finished, the Orange will look ahead to 2014 recruiting. There are certain positions that should be addressed, and CuseNation.com breaks down which have the greatest need.

First Priority

Mike McAllister: Running Back. Syracuse whiffed on grabbing a running back in 2013. That makes the position the top priority heading into the 2014 recruiting season. Prince-Tyson Gulley will be entering his final season, and Jerome Smith could be as well. George Morris and DeVante McFarlane are waiting in the wings, but depth is needed behind them. Adonis Ameen-Moore will also still be in the mix, but will likely be behind Morris and McFarlane. Ashton Broyld will still be there, but will likely be used in a variety of roles.


Naesean Howard figures to be a prime target at RB
The Orange will likely add at least two running backs in the 2014 class, but three is possible. They already have offers out to talented backs like Curtis Samuel, Myles Autry, Donte Williams, Naesean Howard, Matt Domer, and Dallas Rivers. More offers could be on the way as well. Rochester (NY) product Justin Noye is also being recruited as a running back.

Dan Tortora: Running Back. The Syracuse Orange will need to add depth at this position after not attaining any new running backs in the 2013 class. Syracuse had some interest from Augustus Edwards and Laray Smith, but did not come up with either. With the potential of losing both Prince-Tyson Gulley and Jerome Smith after this upcoming season, the Orange will need to bring in new talent to push those that remain. Syracuse utilized three running backs on numerous occasions in 2012, and if that continues in the future of the up tempo Syracuse-style offense, more bodies will be needed to aid in rotation and help in case of injury.

Second Priority

Mike McAllister: Outside linebacker. One outside linebacker was added in the 2013 class in Josh Kirkland, but Syracuse missed out on Devan Carter and Reggie Spearman. Scott Shafer said during his signing day press conference that the linebacker numbers are lower than he'd like them to be. Expect the Orange to address that in 2014, specifically on the outside. The JUCO ranks could be a spot where they look to add talent. Shafer has already reached out to Tyler Bates, although he does not have an offer yet. Syracuse has offered three outside linebackers already, however, in Vincent Jackson, Carl Fuller, and Chris Frey. Dyshawn Davis and Cam Lynch will be entering their final season in 2014, as will Kirkland if he does not redshirt. Marquis Spruill will be graduating after the 2013 season. So the position is thin on depth going forward. As many as five outside linebackers could be added in this class.

Dan Tortora: Linebacker. Marquis Spruill will be moving on after this coming season, leaving one starter in Dyshawn Davis and the likelihood of a possible promotion of Cameron Lynch. Depth has become key in this position as linebackers have been used in rotation as of late. New linebacker coach Clark Lea will have the additions of Luke Arciniega, Josh Kirkland, and Marqez Hodge which could give him some wiggle room, but leadership in this role has taken time and the more linebackers he has, the more layers he will have to develop for a smooth transition as players finish their time at Syracuse.

Third Priority

Mike McAllister: Defensive End. When the 2014 season ends, Syracuse will have to replace Markus Pierce-Brewster, Trevon Trejo (if he does not redshirt), Micah Robinson, and Robert Welsh at a minimum. Pass rushers are always at a premium, and Shafer's attacking style can always use more of those. Look for the Orange to add potentially three or four defensive ends in this class.


Kurt Holuba has already been offered by the Orange
One or two could come from the JUCO ranks as well. Already, Syracuse has offered Malik McDowell, Andrew Brown, , Lorenzo Carter, Dewayne Hendrix, Kurt Holuba, and Lawrence Marshall.

Dan Tortora: Cornerback. None of those on the field for 2012 were consistent in shutting down opposing receivers. Add in the loss of veterans Keon Lyn and Ri'Shard Anderson and the Orange will be depleted in this role. Chauncey Scissum gets the ball rolling as he enters in the 2013 class. Moving ahead, Syracuse must continue to look for more complete, every down-focused corners that can handle the threat of receivers with various talents.

Wildcard

Mike McAllister: Quarterback. Yes Syracuse added two quarterbacks in 2013, but Charlie Loeb will be leaving after this next season and John Kinder will be gone after 2014. Terrell Hunt will be entering his final season in 2015. Adding at least one quarterback will be important, if not two for long-term depth purposes. The Orange have already offered DeShone Kizer, A.J. Long, and William Ulmer, with Nicodem Pierre as a likely target as well.

Dan Tortora: Defensive Tackle. Jay Bromley, Zian Jones, and Davon Walls will all be finished with their eligibility after the 2013-14 season, leaving much space to be filled at this position. The team already has seen passionate and progressive performer Deon Goggins go, so finding big-bodied, strong, and agile individuals to provide help on the interior part of the defensive line is vital.


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