Syracuse has made a concerted effort over the last two cycles to become a strong presence in New Jersey. They have achieved that goal and are now one of the players within the state.
In 2015, they picked up three signees and a preferred walk-on. This cycle, they are looking for more.
Palmer is the first player from the Garden State in 2016 to commit to the Orange. While he is not currently listed as one of the top players in the state, he will have an impact on Syracuse’s efforts there.
Specifically with three-star quarterback Anthony Brown (pictured above), the top player at his position on Syracuse’s board. Palmer and Brown are good friends. Having Palmer work on Brown, who is eyeing a decision as soon as next month, will only help where the Orange stand.
Remember, Brown indicated he considered committing during his spring game visit. So Syracuse is in a good spot.
If Brown were to hop on board, it could start to give the Orange momentum in the state. It would only help Syracuse’s efforts with Donald Stewart and Gene Coleman. It could also help Syracuse recruit Will Fries and Liam Smith.
In fact, Palmer and Smith played Pop Warner together for eight years and know each other very well. Smith said the move doesn’t impact his interest in Syracuse, but it’s another person who can recruit for Syracuse.
The Orange are making moves in New Jersey, and Palmer could be the first domino to fall.
Wide receiver is arguably the most important position for Syracuse in the 2016 class. They could take as many as four this cycle. Snagging one of their top targets early was important.
According to someone close to Palmer’s family who is a former high school assistant coach, Palmer is a hidden gem. In fact, this person was stunned he did not have over 20 offers. He has size, speed, leaping ability and room to add weight to his frame.
Another coach we spoke to described him as Jarrod West with more wiggle and a bit more burst.
If that turns out to be true, Syracuse will have themselves quite a find.
Going forward, the wide receiver recruitment will take some focus. With two or three slots available, the offered players are almost on a first come, first serve basis.
Also in the mix are Isaiah Wright, Gene Coleman, Kolton Huber and K.J. Gray. Gray and Huber both visited Syracuse during the spring game and both are very interested. Coleman is also interested, but is definitely looking at all of his options.
Wright, on the other hand, has not been on campus recently.
Where Does Syracuse Go From Here?
There are a few immediate things to watch for in Syracuse football recruiting. Expect the commitment of Palmer to allow the Orange to make an even bigger push for quarterback Anthony Brown. He could decide as early as May, so he is one to watch in the coming weeks.
April 25th is a critical date for Syracuse as well. That is the announcement date of four-star running back Robert Washington who has the Orange in his top six.
Beyond that, the attention turns to the evaluation period, which starts on April 15th. Expect Syracuse to visit their top targets during that time including Washington, Brown, the aforementioned wide receivers, Ray Marten and many others.
New offers will also likely go out as they discover new prospects during spring practices.
Syracuse has done well finding under the radar prospects and getting them to commit before they blow up. Both of their 2016 commitments fit that description. It is the third cycle in a row that they were able to snag some verbals before the end of April. This staff under head coach Scott Shafer puts a premium on developing strong relationships and turning those into results early. That plan is working once again in 2016.