Lowell (Mass.) High linebacker Shyheim Cullen was going to take his time with his recruitment. That was until he actually got to Syracuse and saw the program in person. After that, he couldn't return home without pledging Orange.
"The reason why I committed to Syracuse was the coaching staff," Cullen said. "That's what really drew me in. They're all really great guys. The school itself was amazing. That drew me in as well. Just basically the coaches and the school overall.
"When I got there, I was thinking I would wait a little bit and keep my options open. When I got there, there was definitely a lot I didn't expect. Especially meeting all of the coaches and getting to know everyone. Then seeing the campus as a whole. Seeing the field and the academics, seeing all that stuff, it really drew me in."
Syracuse went hard after Cullen during his visit. A big reason why was how he performed during the camp Saturday morning.
"What they said was they were very surprised at the way I could move," Cullen said. "I was very agile, especially doing the "L drill." Having to move inside the cones, they were very impressed. Coach Lea was saying that when I was moving inside the cones, I was so low to the ground and moving so fast he thought I was going to fall over.
"But I had great balance and he was surprised at the way I could move."
Another highlight of the trip was checking out the program's facilities. In fact, despite visiting several major programs, the Orange's stood out.
"I thought it was all amazing," Cullen said. "The facilities were the best I've seen from any school I've been to."
When Cullen made his decision known to the Syracuse coaching staff, he got a big reaction.
"They were all ecstatic," Cullen said. "They couldn't believe that I actually wanted to commit that day. They were all happy I wanted to be a Syracuse athlete. My mother and my step dad were glad. If was a very dramatic moment for them."
With his decision out of the way, Cullen can now focus on his career with the Orange.
"My goals for myself, and it's the same for the coaches as well, is to be a better man after I leave the school," he said. "I want to e a great athlete and a great teammate. As far as goals for the team, I want us to win a lot of games."