East Saint Louis (Ill.) High safety Treevon Prater thought his recruiting process early when he made a verbal commitment to Western Michigan. However, he decided to take an official to Syracuse and flipped his pledge during the visit.
"It just seems like the perfect fit," Prater said. "It just feels like home so I decided to choose Syracuse."
The Orange were not a school that hounded the three star prospect throughout the cycle.
"They actually didn't stay in touch all that much," Prater said. "They got back in touch recently. My recruiter is coach Smith. DeAndre Smith. He was telling me how much they could use me and how it would feel like home when I get up there. He was right."
Prater's relationship with running backs coach DeAndre Smith was a big reason why Syracuse felt like home.
"Our relationship is very good," Prater said. "He's a great guy and has always been straight up with me. My relationship with him was a big factor. If he hadn't reached out to me I wouldn't have thought about Syracuse."
The Orange continue to build a pipeline to Illinois. Having players on the roster from the area and part of the 2014 class helped Prater feel comfortable with Syracuse.
"That's a huge thing for me," Prater said. "We've been playing around each other and against each other since we were little. Now we can play on the same team with each other. It's special."
The move to the ACC was important for the 6-foot-2 defensive back as well.
"That was a big factor for me," Prater said. "You get more exposure playing at big schools and playing against Florida State and all them. It's a better chance of me going to the NFL."
Once he arrives at Syracuse, his athleticism will allow him to move around the defensive backfield and be successful however the Orange use him.
"They're going to move me around from safety to corner," Prater said. "They're going to decide a lot of things when I get there. I just want to play, that's all I want to do. It doesn't matter to me where I play."
Switching from Western Michigan to Syracuse means he will be further from home. Despite that, Prater's parents are happy with the decision.
"They actually love Syracuse," Prater said. "They really want me to go there. They just love it because of the education and the opportunity for me there. They really like the coaching staff."
Prater is now focused on his future career at Syracuse.
"I want to get my education," Prater said. "I want to play as hard as I can on the football field every down I get. I'm going to give everything I have to Syracuse."