Syracuse wants to keep the top players in New York home. One of their top targets in those efforts in the 2016 class is Brooklyn (N.Y.) Poly Prep outside linebacker Elias Reynolds. He visited the campus for the first time on Tuesday.
”We arrived and went to the indoor facility where they were practicing,” Reynolds said. “Got a chance to sit and watch practice. We watched individuals, team drills and seven-on-sevens. Spoke to a lot of the coaches.
"After that we sat down with (linebackers) coach (Clark) Lea, (head) coach (Scott) Shafer and (offensive line) coach (Joe) Adam. I got to build a relationship with the coaching staff.”
One of the highlights of the trip was watching the Orange practice. Reynolds first noticed the increased speed of the game, which was impressive to the Empire State product. He also spent the practice session focusing on both his position group and the defense as a whole.
”I wanted to see how the defense flowed,” Reynolds said. “It was pretty intense. Coach gave me a heads up that they were a little rusty because they were just coming back from spring break. They were a little rusty. He said they were sharp before spring break, but when you have that week off where you don’t have to train or anything, you’re going to be rusty.”
While watching practice, Reynolds was given a tour of the new indoor practice facility. He was impressed by Syracuse football’s new gem.
”I thought the indoor practice facility was actually quite awesome,” Reynolds said. “It was nice. Eric White and Cole Dial gave me the tour. They have a speaker system indoors and its open 24-hours. Some players will come in at 12 in the morning or one in the morning and do ladders.”
After watching practice, touring the facilities and checking out different parts of campus, Reynolds sat down with three Syracuse coaches. Linebackers coach Clark Lea, offensive line coach Joe Adam (his primary recruiter) and head coach Scott Shafer.
”They were telling me how the SAM linebacker position depth chart only has two linebackers I guess,” Reynolds said. “How anybody who comes in at that position will be able to play right away. Coach Adam always says New York’s best should stay in New York.
"Coach Shafer said he would really love to coach me and so did coach Lea.”
The visit went well for the three-star linebacker. In fact, it bumped up where Syracuse stands.
”It definitely raised my interest in Syracuse,” Reynolds said. “I had never been so it was kind of hard to put somebody high when you don’t have any background information. But now that I’ve seen them, I’m more interested.”
Reynolds has upcoming visits to UMass and Maryland. He has no timeframe for a decision.