Okoroha Talks Cuse

The Syracuse football staff has done an excellent job recruiting the Washington, D.C., area, which happens to be home to one of the fastest rising prospects on the East Coast in Greenbelt, Md., safety Okachukwu Okoroha. The Cuse was one of the first programs to offer Okoroha, and while a bevy of schools have since become involved, he told Syracusefan.com he has serious interest in SU.

"They've been recruiting me for a while now. I think highly of the school. I haven't gotten around to making visits yet, but I'm going to be making a visit there probably sometime next month," Okoroha said.

Okoroha, a 6-foot-1, 190-pound free safety who goes by the nickname ‘O,' didn't have any scholarship offers as of about a month ago. But he's put on several very impressive performance since then, including an eye-opening outing at Penn State last week, and has piled 11 offers – SU, Virginia, North Carolina State, Boston College, Penn State, UConn, Cincinnati, Illinois, Akron and Eastern Michigan.

"I didn't expect it. I didn't expect much," he said. "But we try to call our high school [Eleanor Roosevelt] ‘The ‘U' of high schools,' and I've been blessed to be around some coaches who have gotten a lot of players in school."

Roosevelt has produced a plethora of talent in recent years: Penn State's Derrick Williams – the former No. 1 recruit in the nation – Florida star Derrick Harvey, Maryland's Tre Covington and Jared Gaither, Illinois Bud Davis just to name a handful. Roosevelt has another player, athletic defensive end Dalonte Wallace, who is being closely watched by the SU staff.

It's possible the two could be a package deal somewhere, though Wallace does not have a scholarship offer from SU yet.

"Dalonte, he's like a brother to me. I knew him before I knew a lot of people who are in my life. We talk all the time about how we'd really like to play together in college," Okoroha said.

Last year Okoroha posted 53 tackles, seven interceptions, two sacks and a forced fumble. He has excellent agility and size, and likely projects as either safety spot in college.

"He's too good of a hitter and a playmaker to put at cornerback. He's more of a natural safety," Roosevelt coach Rick Houchens said.

Okoroha is also a good student and is looking closely at academics.

Asked for his No. 1 priority, he said, "Academics, that's important. And the depth chart, that's second. And I want to go to a school that wins games, or [has the potential] to win games."

The other thing often mentioned about Okoroha is he's a fierce competitor and vocal leader.

He said his best attribute is "the attitude that I bring. I love the game. I play with passion. I leave everything I have out on the field. You could watch me play and it'll be 30 percent athleticism, 70 percent heart.

"I keep competing with you until I win."

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