The tight end position has become a bigger focus late in the 2015 recruiting cycle. The original plan was to take only one, and have that player be more of a receiving threat as a tight end/wide receiver hybrid. However, with Tim Lester taking over the offense, plans have changed.
Syracuse is now looking for more traditional types, but ones that can also be threats in the receiving game. That was evident in the recruitment and eventual commitment of junior college prospect Trey Dunkelberger.
In-state talent Alex Parkinson was a top target, but he decided to go the Ivy League route and committed to Princeton. With the Syracuse coaches on the recruiting trail this week, they found another target that has jumped onto their radar.
Gulfport (Fla.) Boca Ciega tight end Raeshon Dunbar was visited by the Orange on Tuesday.
”This is my first year involved in football,” Dunbar said. “So I don’t know much about the sport. But as of now, I have a few schools waiting on me to take a test. Syracuse could be a good opportunity for me to stay close to my family being that I am from New York. But I’m just going to wait and see what other schools are interested in me. After I take my test, I should be going to visit sometime in January.”
It was coach Lester that visited on Tuesday, and spent some time with both Dunbar and his head coach, Max Smith. Dunbar left with a positive impression after their interaction.
”He told me that their organization was setting up a new offense that he could maybe incorporate me into,” he said. “He was cool and we joked around a little. Overall, a great guy.”
Dunbar has some skills despite only playing one year of football. Coach Max Smith has high praise for him and believes he is only scratching the surface of his potential.
”He is really good,” Smith said. “A power five conference player. The problem is, he never played football until his senior year. He is a basketball player. Nobody knows much about him and his tape is not off the chart because we were not very good. But he’s very talented for that position and I know tight ends are hard to find.”
A visit has not been actually scheduled yet, though both sides are looking at either January 16th or 23rd as possible official visit options. Under NCAA rules, a player is not permitted to take an official visit unless they are clearing house eligible. After his tests later this month, assuming the scores are appropriate, Dunbar will schedule the visit at that time.