Thursday started as a normal day for Doyle Grimes. So the rising-senior linebacker out of South Dade was taken aback when Syracuse offensive coordinator George McDonald surprised him at school with an impromptu visit. Then McDonald shocked Grimes even more, offering him a scholarship.
"It was unexpected," Grimes said through a phone interview. "It caught me off-guard, so it felt great."
Grimes said he was surprised because he didn't know Syracuse was so interested in him.
"Before the offer, I hadn't talked much with any of the coaching staff," Grimes said. "I had received a couple of letters from there."
Grimes said that this interaction with McDonald was the first time the two had any type of recruiting communication, but that they met during the 2013-14 season while McDonald was recruiting Antwan Cordy, Grimes former teammate and a 2014 Syracuse commit.
Currently, Grimes said that he has two other offers, from Appalachian State University and Alcorn State University. He says that Syracuse is an exciting option because "they have a very good chance to compete in the ACC" this season.
"They have a lot of guys coming back from last year," Grime said. "The coaches and players seem great, so that is all very exciting."
Grimes said that as of right now, he is schedule to visit Syracuse this summer, but he is not certain when the actual date will be. And he is very excited to see the city and campus.
He said that Syracuse plans to use him as a linebacker. Because of that, Grimes is working on his pass-defense this offseason, a skill that will be demanded of him at the college level.
"I am working on my cover skills," Grimes said. "And I'm working on my one-on-one skills, as far as going out and covering the receiver and slot guy."
Currently, Syracuse is the largest school to offer Grimes a scholarship. But with a lot of time left to decide on school, other suitors could appear. But right now, he is just trying to focus on improving.
"Right now, everything [skill-wise] is kind of good, but you never are perfect," Grimes said. "I am just working on everything a bit more because that's when the top schools notice you."