It's no secret that a key pipeline for Syracuse in the Scott Shafer era has been the talent-rich state of Florida. Offensive coordinator George McDonald and quarterbacks coach Tim Lester have hit the area hard last cycle and are doing so again in 2015.
Recently, the Orange offered three star Clearwater (Fla.) Central Catholic guard Billy Atterbury.
"My coach called me actually," Atterbury said. "He told me I needed to call him because it would be illegal for him to call me. It was the quarterbacks coach Tim Lester. He just wanted to talk to me and obviously tell me the great news about the offer. But also to get to really know me on a personal level better and introduce himself more.
"He talked a little bit about Syracuse and what I thought about it and how I felt. Obviously it's a great school. A great football team with a great history to go along with it. He really just wanted to introduce himself and start to build that relationship so if he comes down during the spring or summer or I go visit we can already have that relationship started."
A key to Syracuse's success in the Sunshine State has been developing relationships with coaches and players. Lester is trying to push that process along with the 6-foot-4 guard in order to give the Orange an edge.
"He's a really nice guy," Atterbury said. "Very excited. Obviously he kind of wants to sell the school to you and I understand that. But just talking to him, he seemed to be excited to be in the phone call and happy to be at that school. I feel like that bleeds off onto other people and makes it easier to talk to him."
Atterbury is up to four offers, two from in-state schools. According to the junior standout, Syracuse has caught his attention.
"I'm definitely, definitely interested," Atterbury said. "It's my first northeastern school. Only my second one out of Florida. It's definitely a new area for me. They're definitely a great school and the school really speaks for itself. I'm definitely interested in the school."
On the horizon for Syracuse and the three-star talent is setting up a visit, which could go a long way towards the Orange standing with him.
"We were talking to see if I could go to a spring practice or something because I have spring break late," Atterbury said. "Maybe come up for a spring practice or maybe during the summer. Sometime as soon as possible so I can really get to meet the staff. Nothing concrete but I would definitely like to get up there soon.
"I want to see basically the same things you look for at every school. Obviously they have the academics. Obviously it has the athletics, look at the history of the school. But for me it's more about how it fits you as the individual. Does it feel like home because you're going to live there for four or five years. So you want to feel comfortable and relaxed and feel like it's part of your extended family."