With the first snaps of training camp just weeks away, four “Fresh Oranges” are looking to ripen their skills both on and off the field this summer on campus. As these players step into the celebrated tradition and legacy of Syracuse football, they will marvel at the upgrades of the new athletic facilities and lace up their cleats on the turf of Ernie Davis Legends Field in the Carrier Dome.
Only weeks before pre-season begins and each of these incoming freshmen have kept busy since national signing day in February. The expectation is that each rookie member of the Orange is working out in a variety of programs that include weight lifting, strength development, quickness improvement, and agility drills. They are required to report back to the coaching staff on a weekly basis with their results.
“I speak with O-line Coach Adam weekly, and he keeps me on track,” Evan Adams said. “He is the main coach that I stay in touch with due to my position.”
“I have to report my bench press results and workouts to the strength and conditioning coaches on a weekly and monthly basis,” Steven Clark said. “And I communicate with Coach Daoust regarding specialized workouts for my position.”
In addition to the workout regimes, each player indicated that the incoming freshmen have all been communicating via text and social media. Often bragging out their workout scores. Steven Clark may have a little extra to brag about as he placed fourth in the state (Alabama) in the shot put during track season, and finished in first place for the bench, squat, and power clean (280 lbs) in the state championship weightlifting meet.
Both Clark and Amir Ealey are looking forward to the Physical Therapy program at SU.
”This is one of the other reasons that I came to Syracuse,” Ealey said. “I want to be part of a doctorate program in accelerated health sciences and use my networking for a good job placement.”
Like most of their new teammates, these four will be starting summer classes on July 5th, thus beginning their college careers prior to their regular student counterparts.
Most of all the newcomers are most excited to take the field draped in the blue and orange while representing SU with pride.
“It is one of my life long dreams to play in the Carrier Dome,” Sheppard said.
Steven Clark cannot wait to take on his neighbors to the west in perennial power LSU from the SEC. And after living in South Carolina for part of his life, Amir Ealey is looking forward to taking on ACC rival Clemson at the Dome; as well as other former high school teammates now with Rhode Island and Pittsburgh. This new crop of Orange football players brings an excitement and enthusiasm to the 2015 campaign.
Qaadir Sheppard Senior Highlights: