Recruiting Reset: Defensive Tackle

Syracuse missed on a couple of defensive tackle prospects that committed elsewhere over the weekend. Where do the Orange go from here? We break it all down new prospects, upcoming visits and how many Syracuse could take inside.

Syracuse lost out on defensive tackle targets Zeek Rodney and Yodny Cajuste over the weekend. Rodney committed to Wake Forest and Cajuste to West Virginia. Cajuste was a foregone conclusion because his former high school coach was recently hired by the Mountaineers.

Rodney, however, was a huge priority for Syracuse. The Orange thought they had him, but he opted to stay closer to him.

So where does Syracuse go from here at the position?

The Commits

Wayne Williams
Position: Defensive Tackle
School: ASA Junior College (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
The Latest: Williams is on campus and enrolled at Syracuse. The concerns over his academic issues appear to be behind him. He could be in the mix to start for the Orange this season.

The Top Targets

Jalen Harvey
Position: Defensive Tackle
School: Clay-Chalkville High School (Pinson, Ala.)
The Latest: Harvey is a loan on the inside who uses his hands well and is solid against the run. He is currently committed to Western Kentucky, but says his favorite players are Dwight Freeney, Chandler Jones and Art Jones. His favorite basketball player is C.J. Fair. Harvey seemed very excited about his Syracuse offer, and will visit this coming weekend.

Darrius Sapp
Position: Defensive Tackle
School: Valdosta High School (Valdosta, Ga.)
The Latest: Sapp is visiting Syracuse this weekend, as one of three defensive tackles on campus. On film, he appears to have the versatility to play the three technique or nose tackle. He fills his gap well, uses his hands and sheds blockers. Sapp has solid athleticism for his size. He would be a nice late get for the Orange.

Kayton Samuels
Position: Defensive Tackle
School: Arabia Mountain High School (Lithonia, Ga.)
The Latest: Samuels was a late offeree, and recently decommitted from Georgia State. He recently listed Syracuse and Ball State as his top two. He is a three technique who can fill the gap, but doesn't have the same explosion as the other two. Samuels will also be visiting Syracuse this coming weekend.

Alternative Options

Tae Thibodeaux
Position: Defensive Tackle
School: Westgate High School (New Iberia, La.)
The Latest: Thibodeaux was contacted by Syracuse when they started searching for new defensive tackle prospects. He has not been offered and is not scheduled to visit the Orange. However, if Syracuse cannot land their other targets, they may try to get a last minute official from the three star prospect.

Overall Analysis

Syracuse will not take three more defensive tackles in this class. They are looking at one or two more, and figuring out which prospects are the priority. On film, Darrius Sapp stands out because of his size and ability to get into the backfield quickly. That said, Jalen Harvey also has an impressive tape and could be a solid addition to Syracuse's class.

Kayton Samuels appears to be third in this bunch when watching their respective films. He doesn't have the same quick explosion and athleticism that the other two have.

Ultimately, Harvey could end up being the top target. If Syracuse likes the film of Sapp enough, they may make a push for him as well.

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