Taking in their surroundings during an official visit to Syracuse, 2016 safety target, Phil Campbell, and 2018 quarterback target, Josh Comune had high praise for the brand new facilities and fan base the football program has to work with.
Completed in February, the new Ensley Athletic Center – located next to Manley Fieldhouse – allows the football program extra space, time and resources to improve in all facets of the game, which has become a key selling point to recruits moving forward.
Much like other ACC powers in Florida State, Clemson and Louisville, Syracuse finally has the facilities to match (or come pretty close) those previously mentioned programs, which could lead to a higher degree of success when it comes to recruiting.
Inside the new Ensley Center, Campbell and Comune, along with more than 30 other potential recruits, took a tour of the new facilities before making their way over to the Carrier Dome for the annual spring game scrimmage.
Once inside the Dome, the two were blown away with the atmosphere and the fan base’s enthusiasm throughout the scrimmage, which featured some explosive plays on both sides of the ball.
“It was energetic,” Comune said. “Not many college teams can say they play in a Dome…I could see how amped up that place can get.”
Not only did the recruits get a chance to see the current team up close and personal, but some recruits in the 2016 class got the chance to see where they could fit with the program moving forward.
With the loss of Durell Eskridge to graduation, there is an obvious need for safety depth which Campbell could fill, should he choose the Orange. Meeting with some of the coaching staff after the spring game gave Campbell a better understanding of the defense and where he could fit.
But the atmosphere of the Dome left a lasting effect on the ’16 target.
“There’s a strong fan base,” Campbell said. “I can see how loud the Carrier Dome can get. It looks like it can be an exciting atmosphere to play in.”
While the Dome might be an “exciting” place to play in, the program looks to return to relevancy in the near future with the recent spending spree to upgrade facilities across campus. That won’t be the final say in whether a recruit chooses to come to Syracuse or head elsewhere, but perhaps a former player could have an influence?
Comune, who works with former Syracuse QB Madei Williams in the off-season, said he sees himself playing in a spread/pro-style offense once in heads to the collegiate ranks in 2018. As for working with a former Orangemen, he said Williams hasn’t affected his interest in Syracuse whatsoever.
“I don’t know what my recruitment will hold in the future as far as saying where ‘Cuse is at right now,” Comune said. “But I haven’t had any outside influence on anything in my recruiting up to this point.”
The high school sophomore-to-be did add that he has trained with current Orange QB, A.J. Long, in previous off-season’s, so there is still a current connection to the program which could help in the recruitment process.
Neither target has received an official offer from the Orange, but expect Syracuse to keep an eye on Campbell and Comunemoving forward.