Mike Mele Looking Forward to Syracuse

There is no doubt that Greg Robinson exhibited the ability to put together a solid defense in his first season as the Head Coach of the Orange, and that success on the field has spilled over into recruiting where the staff has been able to effectively recruit top defensive prospects.

Scout.com two-star prospect Mike Mele, a 6-foot-0, 220-pound linebacker from Manasquan, N.J. will make a solid addition to a stout defensive unit.

Mele was the fifth commitment in a class that currently numbers 14 pledges, and like most of the other members of the 2007 class the first thing that popped into his mind when asked why he chose to verbal to play for Syracuse was the coaching staff.

"It was definitely the coaches," Mele began. "Coach Robinson and Coach Russ. They are really great coaches and they remind me a lot of my high school coaches."

"Coach Robinson coached in the Super Bowl and Coach Russ played in the Super Bowl, so they know hat it takes to win."

"They had me up for the spring game and I loved the campus. It was beautiful. Overall Syracuse was the perfect fit."

Mele's father played his football for Rutgers and even though he was not a fan of Syracuse growing up he still followed the program closely.

"I always followed Donovan McNabb," he said. "I always followed Rich Scanlon who was from Bergen Catholic and some of their players."

The "Garden State" star plays exclusively at middle linebacker on defense in high school, but the staff plans to move him when he gets on campus.

"They said I would be used on the weak side," Mele informed.

"My biggest strength on defense is my motor. I am always working to get to the ball. I guess I also have good speed and I am always trying to make something happen."

Mele is excited for the future of the program and he is confident that the Orange are headed in the right direction under Robinson's guidance.

"He knows hw to win," Mele said of Robinson. "Syracuse University has always had a great tradition and I feel they are headed in the right direction. Defense is a huge part of having a winning program and a solid defense is going to provide a great foundation."

As a junior, Mele was a dual threat as he led Manasquan to a State Championship. He rushed for over 1,700 yards and 20 touchdowns while racking up 88 tackles on defense. He earned All-Conference, Second Team All-State, and All-County honors for his efforts.

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