Incoming freshman tight end Tyler Provo has stayed true to his hopes of getting on the field for the Syracuse Orange immediately and had some strong words edging closer to his first season. "I'm gonna start right away ‘cause I don't think any tight ends are better than me," said Provo.
Provo expressed that his best attribute is how versatile he is. "You can put me in three-point stance…you can put me outside…not gonna let somebody beat me up," he stated, referring to his abilities to both block and catch passes.
"I've been doing a lot of that," said Provo of practicing catching passes, making known, "I'd rather catch," if given the choice between that and blocking.
Originally recruited by former offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett, now with the NFL's Buffalo Bills with the same title, Provo finally had an opportunity to talk with the coach that had been an integral part of getting him to commit to Syracuse. "I talked to him a couple weeks back when he talked to my brother [Nick], " Provo shared, offering that Hackett wished him good luck.
"I don't think Hackett was replaceable," Provo added.
The young tight end has been in touch with new offensive coordinator George McDonald. "He calls me every once in awhile," Provo stated. He said that the conversations with McDonald include talk about how Provo is doing in school, preparing to play collegiate football, and joking from McDonald to Provo about making sure the tight end is in shape.
Keeping with the coaching staff, Provo shared that he is closest to "probably [head] coach [Scott] Shafer. Coach Shafer came down and saw me [in Florida]."
He said that Shafer told Provo that the Orange "still want you" and are "still gonna run the same type of offense", after Provo endured the news of Hackett's departure.
Going from the coaches to the players, Provo remarked that there is a veteran receiver he has built a relationship with. "On my visit, I hanged out with Jarrod West," Provo offered. "I'm buddies with Jarrod West."
As far as fellow incoming players, "I talk to Austin Wilson all the time," said Provo.
"Last thing we talked about was rooming together," Provo continued.
Asked whether he likes that the competition at quarterback, Provo responded, "I'd rather know who it is."
He currently has no front-runner in his mind. "That's something I'll have to figure out in practice," Provo remarked.
Provo stands at 6'3" and is currently 255 pounds. Provo stated that he was 240 pounds at the end of his senior season and has since added the 15 pounds. He awaits the opportunity to get on the field with Syracuse, having been ready to get to college and start playing while competing in his senior season.