Orangeyes Daily Articles for Friday - for Football |

Orangeyes Daily Articles for Friday for Football


No recent Cali or Iggy awards; Mr Irrelevant
Aug 15, 2011

Welcome to Bill of Rights Day!

On December 15, 1791, Virginia ratified the first ten amendments of the Constitution. With this, the amendments reached the requisite number of state ratifications necessary to become part of the Constitution. Known as the Bill of Rights, the first ten amendments outline the rights of citizens vis-à-vis the federal government. They guarantee that citizens have civil rights and liberties such as freedom of speech, press, and religion; they establish rules for due process of law; they confirm that citizens have rights beyond those spelled out in the Constitution; and they affirm that powers not delegated to the federal government are left to the people and states. It is on today's anniversary of the ratification and implementation of the Bill of Rights that we celebrate Bill of Rights Day.

SU News (SI; McAllister)

Syracuse football is set for its second big official visit weekend of the Fran Brown era, and the visitor list features high profile and transfers and high school recruits. Here is a list of who is expected to be on campus. If more recruits arrive, we will add their names to the list as we confirm.

Note: All are class of 2024 recruits unless noted as a transfer.

Player: Raynor Andrews
Position: Offensive Line
Height/Weight: 6-6, 315 lbs
School: Miami Jackson (FL)
Rating: 3-star
Commitment Status: Committed to Rutgers
Notable Offers: Colorado, Florida State, Rutgers, Syracuse, West Virginia

Player: Gabe Arnold
Position: Offensive Line
Height/Weight: 6-6, 290 lbs
School: Merritt Island (FL)
Rating: 3-star
Commitment Status: Committed to Western Kentucky
Notable Offers: FIU, Marshall, South Florida, Western Kentucky

Player: Caden Brown
Position: Edge
Height/Weight: 6-3, 210 lbs
School: Erasmus Hall (NY)
Rating: 3-star
Commitment Status: Committed to Western Kentucky
Notable Offers: Boston College, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Michigan State, Nebraska, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Washington, West Virginia

Player: Fadil Diggs
Position: Defensive Line
Height/Weight: 6-5, 260 lbs
School: Texas A&M Transfer
Rating: 4-star
Commitment Status: Not Committed
Notable Offers: Alabama

Player: Fatim Diggs
Position: Linebacker
Height/Weight:6-3, 220 lbs
School: Eastside (NJ)
Rating: 3-star
Commitment Status: Not Committed
Notable Offers:Boston College, Maryland, Ole Miss, Penn State, Syracuse, Virginia, West Virginia

Player: Willie Goodacre
Position: Offensive Line
Height/Weight: 6-5, 300 lbs
School: Guyer (TX)
Rating: 3-star
Commitment Status: Committed to Syracuse
Notable Offers: Arizona State, BYU, Cal, Houston, Kansas, Michigan State, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska,SMU

Player: Tristen Graham
Position: Defensive Line
Height/Weight: 6-3, 245 lbs
School: Middletown (DE)
Rating: 3-star
Commitment Status: Committed to Syracuse
Notable Offers: Michigan State

Player: Devin Grant
Position: Safety
Height/Weight: 6-4, 190 lbs
School: Buffalo Transfer
Rating: 3-star
Commitment Status: Not Committed
Notable Offers: Oklahoma State, Michigan State, Vanderbilt, Syracuse

Player: Ta'Ron Haile
Position: Wide Receiver
Height/Weight: 6-1, 180 lbs
School: Millville (NJ)
Rating: 3-star
Commitment Status: Committed to Syracuse
Notable Offers: Boston College, Maryland, Nebraska, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, West Virginia

Player: Jaden Hart
Position: Running Back
Height/Weight: 6-0, 205 lbs
School: Michigan City (IN)
Rating: 3-star
Commitment Status: Committed to Syracuse
Notable Offers: Boston College, Duke, Iowa State, Kentucky, Minnesota, Nebraska, Purdue

Player: James Heard
Position: Linebacker
School: West Virginia Transfer
Rating: NR
Commitment Status: Not Committed
Notable Offers: Unknown

Player: Yazeed Haynes
Position: Wide Receiver
School: Georgia Transfer
Rating: 3-star
Commitment Status: Not Committed
Notable Offers: Unknown

Player: Braheem Long
Position: Defensive Back
Height/Weight: 6-0, 170 lbs
School: Camden (NJ)
Rating: 3-star
Commitment Status: Committed to Syracuse
Notable Offers: Pittsburgh, West Virginia

Player: Michael Matthews-Canty
Position: Safety
Height/Weight: 6-2, 200 lbs
School: St. Michael (VA)
Rating: 3-star
Commitment Status: Committed to Syracuse
Notable Offers: Appalachian State, Liberty

Player: Kyle McCord
Position: Quarterback
School: Ohio State Transfer
Rating: 4-star
Commitment Status: Not Committed
Notable Offers: Nebraska, Rutgers


Ohio State quarterback Kyle McCord plays against Minnesota during an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 18, 2023, in Columbus, Ohio.AP Photo/Jay LaPrete

Axe: You’re not dreaming, SU fans. 4 and 5-star recruits are coming to visit (PS; $; Axe)

Syracuse football fans must be waiting for the jig to be up.

They are Kevin McCallister loudly proclaiming that he’s eating junk and watching rubbish and someone better jump out and stop him.

They just found a $100 bill on the street and are looking for the string attached to it.

A five-star quarterback
will be on the Syracuse University campus this weekend, you say?

One of the top-rated defensive players in the transfer portal will come to Syracuse the day after visiting Alabama?

Two wide receivers from Georgia will be here too?

Come on. Don’t pee on my leg and tell me it’s raining.

Guys, it’s true. All of it.

New Syracuse football coach Fran Brown has flipped the narrative on its head in less than a month that you can’t and won’t get high-rated players to visit the Salt City, let alone get some to actually commit to play for the Orange.

Former Ohio State QB Kyle McCord, the highest-rated recruit to be in SU’s crosshairs since Cecil Howard in 2001, would be a major score for the Orange.

He only has one year of eligibility remaining, but that’s a year that allows Brown to keep at it on the recruiting and transfer trail knowing he’s got a bonafide starting quarterback in tow to hold down the fort.

McCord may come at a significant cost in NIL funds, so it’s a good thing SU’s preferred collective just got a boost in donations since Brown was hired.

It’s been interesting watching Ohio State fans trash McCord’s exit on social media. I guess that’s what happens when you get spoiled with quarterbacks like Justin Fields and CJ Stroud calling signals in recent years before McCord took over.

Texas A&M defensive assistant coach Joe Schaefer expected to follow Elijah Robinson to Syracuse (; Karels)

Texas A&M defensive assistant coach Joe Schaefer is expected to be hired in a similar role at Syracuse, 247Sports’s Matt Zenitz reported Thursday evening. Schaefer would be following A&M interim head coach Elijah Robinson, who will be the defensive coordinator for the Orange under new head coach Fran Brown.

It remains unclear whether Schaefer will fulfill his duties with the Aggies through their bowl game. A&M (7-5) will face No. 20 Oklahoma State (9-4) in the TaxAct Texas Bowl in Houston on Dec. 27 (8 p.m. on ESPN).

Schaefer, 38, initially joined the Aggies as a defensive analyst ahead of the 2022 season. After its longtime defensive ends coach, Terry Price, died of cancer in June, A&M promoted Schaefer to an assistant role. He was tasked with coaching multiple position groups.

With the help of Schaefer, the Aggie defense impressed for most of the regular season. They are ranked third nationally in sacks per game (3.5), fourth in tackles for a loss per game (eight), ninth in total defense (295 yards allowed per game), No. 17 in run defense (106.7 rushing yards allowed per game) and No. 31 in scoring defense (21.3 points allowed per game).

Before A&M hired Schaefer, he served various coaching roles at Division II Findlay (2009), Toledo (2010), Benedictine High in Cleveland (2011-15), Maryland (spring 2016), Iowa State (2016-17), Division III John Carroll (2018-19) and FCS Youngstown State (2020-21). Schaefer also played linebacker for Bowling Green (2005-08).

Syracuse 2024 recruits talk official visit: Brown will work with CBs (PS; $; Lieker)

Relationships with Fran Brown established long before he became Syracuse football’s head coach lured two Top 500 players to the Salt City for official visits last weekend.

Koy Beasley, the country’s No. 124 prospect per the 247Sports Composite, and Marcellus Barnes Jr. (No. 382) were two of at least 10 Syracuse recruits from the class of 2024 and the transfer portal who visited the Salt City on Dec. 8-9.

“We’ve been locked in a long time,” Barnes told of his relationship with Brown. “He’s welcome at our home any time. He’s family to us.”

Both recruits said that Brown tipped them off he was leaving Georgia before the news became official. Neither had Syracuse on their radars before Brown’s hiring.

Beasley, who’s verbally committed to Purdue, could be one of the next recruits to flip his commitment when he signs with a program on early national signing day (Dec. 20).

“I could feel the hype, feel the buzz around the program,” Beasley said. “We’ll see what happens.”

Barnes, currently uncommitted, will announce where he’s headed on Jan. 6 at the All-American Bowl. He is deciding between Syracuse, Georgia and Ole Miss.

Both recruits play in the secondary, the position group Brown’s coaching experience centers around. Beasley is the No. 11 safety in the country — though he said Brown told him he’d play cornerback at Syracuse — and Barnes is the No. 31 cornerback according to the 247Sports Composite.

Barnes said Brown told him he will coach the cornerbacks. There have not been reports yet of a planned defensive backs hire for Brown’s staff.

Beasley said Brown told him he plans on playing five defensive backs and is “bringing in guys he wants.”

Though the hibachi dinner in the JMA Wireless Dome that made a splash on social media was the trip highlight, Syracuse kept the recruits busy during Brown’s first official visit weekend.

They watched current Orange players practice for the Boca Raton Bowl, chatted with members of Brown’s new staff and listened to presentations about academics and name, image and likeness opportunities. They got to play laser tag and go bowling, and closed the visit with a steakhouse dinner.

SU's Fran Brown to mandate 30 hours of community service annually from players (; Croston)

Syracuse’s new football coach will be demanding something of his players and it’s meant to help those in need in Central New York.

From his first press conference, Fran Brown made it known that he wasn’t just here to transform the Syracuse football program, he wants to transform the community too.

On Wednesday, while speaking about supporting the Salvation Army’s annual Red Kettle-thon, Coach Brown had plenty more to say about the impact he intends to have.

In less than two weeks since being introduced as SU’s new head coach, Fran Brown visited Van Duyn Elementary School for a coat drive and promoted the Salvation Army’s Kettle-thon effort. He walks the walk and expects his players to do the same.

It’s mandatory that every kid does 30 hours of community service. That’s what’s mandatory, and now I want to see what you do for you. Every football player is going to do those hours of community service because that’s what you should do ... because this is your platform and where you are.

Brown added that the 30 mandatory hours of community service will be mandated yearly.

Syracuse football coach Fran Brown pledges to help address Syracuse's youth violence (; Staff)

A 15-year-old teenage boy is dead after being shot in Syracuse Tuesday night.

It’s the latest tragedy in an ongoing saga the city of Syracuse is having with youth violence and youth crime.

There could be an unlikely person helping to lead our community out of this youth violence issue.

From his first press conference, Fran Brown made it known that he wasn’t just here to transform the Syracuse football program–he wanted to transform the community too.

As the team’s new coach travels the country searching for recruits, he’s offering his condolences and pledging to make a difference for families here in Syracuse.

This year, Syracuse continued a tragic trend of youth violence that began on Martin Luther King Jr. day, when 11-year-old Brexiealee Torres-Ortiz was killed just feet from a school that bears the civil rights leader’s name.

She was gunned down as an unintended victim in a drive-by shooting while she returned home with a gallon of milk from a corner store.

On July 4th, just weeks after graduating high school, 17-year-old Karlianne Short was shot in the back and later died at the hospital.

Most recently, less than two weeks before Christma, a 15-year-old boy–also shot in the back–is the latest victim of youth violence.

He was found in the same park where another 15-year-old boy was killed in 2021.

Fran Brown said that he believes a part of the solution is talking with children in elementary school–adding that sometimes by the time they reach sixth grade– ‘it could be too late.’

CNY Central's Samantha Croston asked Brown in an interview if he felt he could take on the responsibility of helping some of the city's at-risk youth.

"I have to," he replied. "I’m going to. That will happen. I’m going to make sure I help out any little kid. It’s the weight I wanted to carry and I prayed for that."

)youtube; podcast; Orange Zone)

In an interview with Fran Brown for the Salvation Army Red Kettle Telethon event, CNY Central's Samantha Croston and the new head coach of Syracuse Football discuss the importance of community service and the Syracuse community at large.

Alijah Clark " The 315" 12-14-23 (ESPN; radio; The 315)

Syracuse football defensive back Alijah Clark joins Brian Higgins to preview the Boca Raton Bowl, discuss what Fran Brown brings to the Orange, and more.

Keeping Up With The 315 12-14-23 )ESPN; radio; The 315)

Guest host Tim Leonard ran the airwaves of ESPN Syracuse Radio today. Tim started the show with the portal watch, discussing those on the list heading to and/or from Syracuse and more. Next, Tim took calls from listeners. Finally, Tim talked more in-depth with the portal, moves the school has made and more.

Newhouse after Noon 12-14-23 (; radio; Newhouse after Noon)

TJ O'Sullivan & Emily Coffey start the show talking Syracuse football and what positions they believe the team needs to focus on from the transfer portal. Then, Andrew Della Piana & AJ Myers discuss the scorching-hot SU women's basketball team and why they've been so successful this season.

2023 Boca Raton Bowl: Syracuse vs. USF Tale of the Tape (; Admin)

It’s the most wonderful time of the year because bowl season has arrived. Everyone gets to see some of the most interesting matchups of the college football season with the month that caps everything off.

One of the games worth checking out is the 2023 Boca Raton Bowl, featuring Syracuse and South Florida. Both teams come in with 6-6 records but how will the Boca Raton Bowl turn out? Let’s take a look at each team.


Despite Dino Babers getting fired, Syracuse has to feel good about how things turned out, winning six games to make it to their second consecutive bowl game. All six of their wins came against teams that failed to become bowl eligible and all six losses came to teams that wound up being bowl eligible.

Averaging 25.4 points per game (good for 81st in the nation), the Orange would definitely qualify as a run-heavy offense. They finished 29th in the country with 185 yards per game. The passing offense, however, averaged just 173.7 yards per game, a paltry 116th (out of 130 teams) in all of college football.

LeQuint Allen rushed for 1,062 yards and nine touchdowns while quarterback Garrett Shrader contributed 469 yards and eight touchdowns on top of that.

Shrader had a tough season dealing with injuries but threw for 1,686 yards and 13 touchdowns on a 62.6 completion percentage. The Orange are a bit one-dimensional offensively but have shown to be more than capable of grinding things out on the ground.

On the defensive end, the Orange are solid if unspectacular. They finished 49th in the country by allowing 23.8 points per game. They were better against the run (147.1 yards per game, 54th in the nation) than the pass (231.2 yards per game (74th). Marlowe Wax led the team with an impressive 99 tackles while Kevon Darton provided the pressure with five sacks.

For any fantasy football players, he was a popular pick. If you want to know more about fantasy sports and the history of fantasy leagues check


This is a big season for the Bulls, who are going bowling for the first time in five years. They also won six games this season, though they managed something Syracuse did not: defeating a bowl eligible team (Rice). They also lost to two teams that didn’t qualify in Florida Atlantic and UAB.

USF has a much better offense (on paper) than Syracuse, averaging 30.7 points per game to rank 48th in the country. Unlike the Orange, the Bulls were far more balanced. They finished 31st in the air (270.7 yards) and 30th on the ground (184.7 yards), the latter one spot behind Syracuse.

Syracuse football lands prediction for a top New York prospect, 3-star edge who will visit (itlh; Adler)

Caden Brown, a 2024 three-star edge and one of the top prospects across the state of New York in the senior class, will take a visit to Syracuse football this weekend, as first reported by The Juice Online on the network.

The 6-foot-4, 215-pound defensive end is the son of Alban Brown, who played linebacker for the Orange from 1987 to 1989.

Caden Brown, who holds a scholarship offer from the ‘Cuse and numerous other high-major programs, is a standout senior at Erasmus Hall High School in Brooklyn, N.Y.

Top NY prospect Caden Brown @brown11_caden to visit #Syracuse this weekend, a source tells Rivals.
— The Juice on Rivals (@TheJuiceOnline) December 14, 2023
Earlier this month, Erasmus defeated Tottenville High School in Staten Island, N.Y., for the New York City Public Schools Athletic League (“PSAL”) Class 4A championship.

Syracuse football appears to be a strong contender for 2024 three-star edge Caden Brown.

A couple of days ago, Brown said in part to 247Sports reporter James Finneral, “Syracuse is currently my top choice, mainly because of coach Brown. His coaching style aligns with what I appreciate in a program.”

NCAA says redshirt eligibility rule still applies, fears free agency if it loses transfer suit (PS; AP)

College basketball programs with multiple-transfer athletes are pondering whether to let them play after a federal judge gave them a small window to compete as part of a ruling in a lawsuit that the NCAA suggests would open college athletics to free agency.

U.S. District Judge John Preston Bailey in West Virginia issued a temporary restraining order against the NCAA on Wednesday. The ruling said athletes who previously were denied the chance to play immediately after transferring a second time can compete in games for 14 days.

As some schools with athletes impacted by the ruling consulted with their internal legal teams to determine the next steps, a document circulated by the NCAA to its member schools clarifies that the redshirt rule for athletes would still apply if the court’s decision is reversed: Basketball players who compete during the two-week window would be using a season of eligibility.

The court ruling comes while the transfer window is open for football and creates an opportunity for players who have already transferred using their so-called one-time exception for immediate eligibility to enter the portal again and be cleared to compete next season.

A hearing on the restraining order is set for Dec. 27. The lawsuit filed by seven states could have a profound impact on college sports if successful. In court documents, the NCAA said the plaintiffs “seek to remake collegiate athletics and replace it with a system of perpetual and unchecked free agency.”

NCAA rules allow underclassmen to transfer once without having to sit out a year. But an additional transfer as an undergraduate generally requires the NCAA to grant a waiver allowing the athlete to compete immediately. Without it, the athlete would have to sit out for a year at the new school.
... (SI; McAllister)

Syracuse football is expected to add Kansas to its 2024 non-conference schedule, according to a report from Bryson Stricker of Bleacher Report. No official word has been given by either side, including which game it would replace on the Orange’s schedule. What makes the most sense is that it would replace the Army game as Army is joining the American Athletic Conference and therefore revamping its schedule. Previously, Army was one of a few remaining independents.

If this becomes official, it would give new Syracuse head coach Fran Brown a marquee non-conference game for his first season at the helm. Kansas has spent time in the top 25 polls the last two seasons, and finished the 2023 season in the others receiving votes following an 8-4 campaign. Kansas is slated to face UNLV in the Guaranteed Rate Bowl on December 26th.

The Orange’s current non-conference schedule for the 2024 season includes home games against Ohio (August 31st), Holy Cross (September 28th) and UConn (time and location TBD). The Army game is currently scheduled for September 21st and would be at West Point. If Kansas replaces that game, it would make sense to slot in on the same day. Again, nothing official has been announced.

Kyle McCord Shouldn’t Be Syracuse’s Main Target (; Aitken)

It’s been a busy week for Fran Brown and Syracuse football. Four-star recruits are flocking to campus for visits, and the Orange have already flipped several players originally committed to other schools. However, SU has one main position that it hasn’t locked down yet: quarterback.

Now, there has been a name that’s associated with Syracuse already, which is Kyle McCord. The former Ohio State quarterback is one of the hottest commodities on the transfer portal market, and for good reason. He led the Buckeyes to an 11-1 record this season. Plus, the QB tallied over 3,000 passing yards and 24 touchdowns. For an SU signal caller, those would be spectacular numbers, but it left OSU fans wanting more.

Orange fans almost unanimously want Kyle McCord to come to Syracuse. The rumors have fairly made many excited for the possible transfer. However, there’s a better fit for SU on the market: Maalik Murphy.

The magnetic Fran Brown inspires hope in Syracuse football faithful (Guest Opinion by Joe Masterleo) (PS; Masterleo)

Joe Masterleo, formerly of Jamesville, lives in Central Florida.

To inspire is to inspirit, one soul to another. In religious circles, the word is associated with breath (the Latin spirare), breathing life into something moribund, flagging or wanting in vitality. Inspirational energy is the purest kind of motivational energy, bubbling forth from the inside of people, infecting others likewise in enduring ways. This rare phenomenon is usually palpable in gifted religious and business leaders, educators, writers, military commanders and in creative endeavors of all kinds, but almost never in politics. Saints, legends and heroes alike have been endowed with it, whatever “it” is.

If you hadn’t noticed, inspirational energy is simmering to a boil, about to raise the roof over Central New York’s renowned on-campus dome. It began with Syracuse University Athletic Director John Wildhack introducing former Geogia assistant coach Fran Brown as the new SU football coach. That’s Francis Brown, as in St. Francis, the latter being so inspirited as to have sacred regard for all living things, and of a rare magnetic temperament to draw them to himself. Judging by his demeanor at the press conference, be-all-you-can-be Coach Fran is similarly inspired, likewise possessed of a rare magnetic temperament, one given to draw large numbers of recruits to himself. All of which sits well with the chancellor, AD and win-deprived fans. And like his namesake, this Francis is not at all reticent as to where his calling (L. vocare, “to call”) and recruiting gifts originate. Nowadays, such things are best kept private, at most framed in more neutral language publicly. So diluted, some would say, as to lose their Sunday punch. Not so with this modern-day Francis. Ask any recruit who has ever been alone in a room with him, upon signing on the dotted line.

It’s a rare and privileged gift to infectiously inspire (spiritize) others in just the right way and time. And to do so unassumingly, without a hard sell, by being just yourself. On the religious side, Moses, Jesus, Gandhi and MLK all had the gift, as did Patton and Lombardi, in war and football, respectively. War, religion and football wouldn’t be the same, otherwise fueled.

ACC News

Kelly Gramlich and Eric Mac Lain talk ACC football - Gramlich and Mac Lain (mac & Gram; podcast; Mac & Gram)

Let's preview some bowls! Today we break down the Gasparilla Bowl (GT vs. UCF) & the Boca Raton Bowl (Syracuse vs. USF) with ESPN football analyst Roddy Jones. Presented by Ingles Markets.

Notre Dame mailbag: ACC's impact on the Sun Bowl, plus thoughts on Irish roster (; $; Sampson)

Keeping up with the postseason?

Since the last Notre Dame mailbag dropped, Notre Dame’s starting quarterback opted out of the Sun Bowl, Notre Dame’s next starting quarterback committed to the team and Marcus Freeman continued to push the envelope in the transfer portal while trying to keep the roster together.

You’ve got questions about all that, plus the Sun Bowl, NIL and next year’s College Football Playoff. Let’s get started.

Note: Submitted questions have been lightly edited for length and clarity.

It appears the ACC interfered with the Pop-Tarts Bowl and Gator Bowl, prohibiting them from selecting Notre Dame and instead forcing them to take ACC schools. Does Jack Swarbrick or Pete Bevacqua make a major issue of this? Notre Dame lost out on potentially seven figures in bowl revenue because of the ACC’s interference, and this could set the precedent that Notre Dame gets shafted at the whims of the ACC. — Michael M.

I corresponded with an ACC official immediately after the bowl selections asking if Notre Dame was eligible for the league’s Tier 1 bowls — Brett McMurphy reported Notre Dame was ineligible to be chosen — and was told the Irish could have been selected by those bowls. Now, did the ACC lean on those games to take care of teams in its actual conference as opposed to Notre Dame? Our Stewart Mandel reported as much earlier this month.

But is Notre Dame going to stomp its feet about this issue? After the ACC let Notre Dame join the league for one COVID season, after the ACC took Stanford and Cal at Notre Dame’s urging, after the conference paid Notre Dame $17 million last tax cycle in media rights, after the league developed Notre Dame’s last starting quarterback and its next one, after the league agreed to house Notre Dame’s basketball, soccer, lacrosse and other Olympic sports?

Probably not.

If I was Jim Phillips (or anyone running the ACC), I’d have done the exact same thing. The ACC’s priority should be its own membership, especially after what happened to Florida State with the College Football Playoff. Notre Dame? The school that could single-handedly solve the conference’s suffocating media rights deal by joining in full. The Irish come after everyone else. And that’s fine. Because pitching a fit over which minor bowl game you’re attending doesn’t feel like a good way to spend political capital with the conference.

College football recruiting: Top-50 athlete headlines this week's ACC commits (; Linton)

The 2024 recruiting cycle is still heating up with the Early Signing Period coming up next week as some of the top high school football players around the country are announcing their respective college decisions.

During the week of Dec. 8-14, 16 players committed to an ACC program, including 13 prospects in the 2024 class and three underclassmen. The group of ACC commits is headlined by an athlete ranked among the top-50 nationally.

Eight ACC schools secured at least one commitment this week. Syracuse leads the way with four, followed by California and Georgia Tech with three each, then Boston College with two, while Clemson, Florida State, Miami and NC State each have one.

With that in mind, scroll down to take a look at the prospects who committed to an ACC program over the past week, starting with the 2024 prospects and concluding with the underclassmen.


Dec. 9: Kendall Jackson | DL

Committed to: Miami
247Sports rank: 3-star | 89 rating | No. 38 DL
Recruiting background: A 6-foot-4, 250-pound defensive lineman out of Gainesville (Fla.) F.W. Buchholz, Jackson committed to the Hurricanes just one week after decommitting from Florida, becoming the 28th member of Mario Cristobal’s 2024 recruiting class. He was pledged to the Gators for nearly five months before reopening his recruitment on Dec. 2. Miami defensive line coach Jason Taylor was the lead recruiter with an assist from defensive run game coordinator and defensive line coach Joe Salave’a. Jackson registered 50 tackles, four tackles for loss, three sacks, 14 quarterback hurries and four pass breakups over 14 games as a senior, per MaxPreps.
Abbreviated scouting report: “A scheme-versatile defensive lineman with growth potential and developmental upside. … Makes the biggest difference with his motor as he keeps his legs pumping and is always looking to clean up the trash. Plays with a nice forward lean and at times can just overpower opposing tackles/guards with his wide base and initial push.” — 247Sports director of scouting Andrew Ivins

Dec. 10: Jaylan Hornsby | WR

Committed to
: Syracuse
247Sports rank: 3-star | 88 rating | No. 84 WR
Recruiting background: A 6-foot-2, 195-pound wide receiver out of Atco (N.J.) Winslow Township, Hornsby flipped his commitment from Texas A&M to Syracuse following an official visit to the campus. The flip reunites him with Syracuse defensive coordinator Elijah Robinson, who served as his primary recruiter at Texas A&M before leaving the Aggies to join the Syracuse staff under new head coach Fran Brown. Hornsby had been pledged to the Aggies since July 1, but he now becomes the 15th commitment for the Orange in the 2024 recruiting cycle. Hornsby hauled in 22 receptions for 420 yards and eight touchdowns over nine games as a senior, per MaxPreps.

Dec. 10: Yasin Willis | RB

Yasin Willis

(Photo: Shawn Brown, 247Sports)

Committed to: Syracuse
247Sports rank: 3-star | 88 rating | No. 47 RB
Recruiting background: A 6-foot-1, 220-pound running back out of Montvale (N.J.) St. Joseph Regional, Willis flipped his commitment from Pittsburgh to Syracuse after new head coach Fran Brown hosted him on an official visit. He had been committed to the Panthers since July 29, but he now becomes the 16th member of Syracuse’s 2024 recruiting class. In eight games as a senior, Willis rushed for 682 yards and 12 touchdowns on 129 carries and caught 13 passes for 196 yards, per MaxPreps.
... (; Lassan)

College football's 2023 regular season is complete and bowl season is all that's left for this year. With the games completed, it's time to honor the best of the best in the ACC and select this season's all-conference team.

Florida State leads the way with seven first-team selections, including quarterback Jordan Travis, defensive end Jared Verse, and receiver Keon Coleman. North Carolina's high-powered offense features selections in quarterback Drake Maye, running back Omarion Hampton, and tight end Bryson Nesbit. Also, the All-ACC squad is headlined by All-America candidates in linebacker Payton Wilson (NC State) and receiver Malik Washington (Virginia).

Athlon Sports honors the best players in the ACC with all-conference honors for 2023:

Postseason 2023 All-ACC Team

First-Team Offense

QB Jordan Travis, Florida State
RB Jawhar Jordan, Louisville
RB Omarion Hampton, North Carolina
AP Bhayshul Tuten, Virginia Tech
WR Keon Coleman, Florida State
WR Malik Washington, Virginia
WR Xavier Restrepo, Miami
TE Bryson Nesbit, North Carolina
C Bryan Hudson, Louisville
OL Graham Barton, Duke
OL Christian Mahogany, Boston College
OL Michael Jurgens, Wake Forest
OL Darius Washington, Florida State
OL Ozzy Trapilo, Boston College

First-Team Defense

DL Jared Verse, Florida State
DL Ashton Gillotte, Louisville
DL Tyler Davis, Clemson
DL DeWayne Carter, Duke
DL Antwaun Powell-Ryland, Virginia Tech
LB Payton Wilson, NC State
LB Cedric Gray, North Carolina
LB Jeremiah Trotter Jr., Clemson
LB Kalen DeLoach, Florida State
CB Nate Wiggins, Clemson
CB Elijah Jones, Boston College
S Kamren Kinchens, Miami
S Jonas Sanker, Virginia

First-Team Specialists

K Andres Borregales, Miami
P Alex Mastromanno, Florida State
KR Bhayshul Tuten, Virginia Tech
PR Keon Coleman, Florida State

Second-Team Offense

QB Drake Maye, North Carolina
RB Trey Benson, Florida State
RB LeQuint Allen, Syracuse
AP Will Shipley, Clemson
WR Jamari Thrash, Louisville
WR Kevin Concepcion, NC State
WR Jordan Moore, Duke
TE Jaheim Bell, Florida State
C Matt Lee, UCF
OL Jalen Rivers, Miami
OL Jacob Monk, Duke
OL Blake Miller, Clemson
OL Anthony Belton, NC State
OL D'Mitri Emmanuel, Florida State

Second-Team Defense

DL Braden Fiske, Florida State
DL Kaimon Rucker, North Carolina
DL Jasheen Davis, Wake Forest
DL Rueben Bain, Miami
DL Joshua Farmer, Florida State
LB Barrett Carter, Clemson
LB Francisco Mauigoa, Miami
LB Marlowe Wax, Syracuse
CB M.J. Devonshire, Pitt
CB Quincy Riley, Louisville
CB Renardo Green, Florida State
S Malik Mustapha, Wake Forest
S Jaylon King, Georgia Tech

Second-Team Specialists

K Noah Burnette, North Carolina
P Porter Wilson, Duke
KR Brashard Smith, Miami
PR Tucker Holloway, Virginia Tech (SI; Caudell)

Next week is going to be a huge one for Brent Key and Georgia Tech.
Not only are the Yellow Jackets going to be playing in their first bowl game since 2018, but the early signing period is next Wednesday, two days before Georgia Tech faces UCF. Georgia Tech is looking to finish off what is a top 35 class right now on 247Sports and they have been adding to it this week.

On Sunday, Georgia Tech began to add to its class with linebacker Caleb Dozier, who was a former Mississippi State commit. Then on Monday morning, defensive end Uche Iloh committed to Georgia Tech, and just last night, in-state offensive lineman Kai Greer committed to Georgia Tech. These commitments moved Georgia Tech to 7th in the ACC in the 247Sports recruiting rankings and could move up.

Not much else has changed in the past week for the ACC in the world of recruiting. At least not yet.

2024 Georgia Tech commit Kai Greer
247 Sports: Credit: Don Callahan, Inside Carolina
Florida State and Miami remain a good distance ahead of everyone else in the conference right now and they are both still chasing elite five and four-star players. Both of those programs have top six classes nationally and could finish as high as second.

Clemson remains at third and as I said last week, I expect them to stay there. They are not close enough to Miami or Florida State to be able to go ahead of them, but they are far enough ahead of everyone else in the conference.
The same could be said about North Carolina, which is No. 4 in the ACC right now. They will likely stay there, but Stanford and NC State are close enough at No. 5 and No. 6 that they could close strong and pass them.

Georgia Tech is No. 7 right now, but Duke and Pitt are not that far behind. No's 10-17 have not changed. Wake Forest, Virginia Tech, Syracuse, Louisville, Cal, Virginia, SMU, Boston College.
One program out of those eight schools to watch is Syracuse. Fran Brown has gotten some nice recruiting wins since being hired and he could get them in the top eight in the next week.

My biggest storylines to watch next Wednesday will be the battle between Miami and Florida State for the top ACC class and to see what Georgia Tech and Syracuse can close down the stretch.

2024 linebacker Caleb Dozier
247 Sports: Credit- Dana Robertson

ACC Recruiting Rankings (As of 12/14, via 247Sports):

1. Florida State
2. Miami
3. Clemson
4. North Carolina
5. Stanford
6. NC State
7. Georgia Tech
8. Duke
9. Pitt
10. Wake Forest
11. Virginia Tech
12. Syracuse
13. Louisville
14. Cal
15. Virginia
16. SMU
17. Boston College

2024 High School Commitments (24)

  • Santana Alo-Tupuola (IOL)
  • Jordan Boyd (DE/LB)
  • Tah'j Butler (LB)
  • Aaron Philo (QB)
  • Trey Horne (ATH)
  • Landen Marshall (DT)
  • David Prince (TE)
  • Trelain Maddox (RB)
  • Jordan Floyd (OL)
  • Nehemiah Chandler (DB)
  • Graham Knowles (QB)
  • Luke Harpring (ATH)
  • Koby Young (WR)
  • Khamani Alexander (RB)
  • Trashun Griffin (Edge)
  • Isiah Canion (WR)
  • Troy Stevenson (CB)
  • Christian Pritchett (DB)
  • Jameson Riggs (OL)
  • Cedric Franklin (DB)
  • Harrison Moore (OL)
  • Caleb Dozier (LB)
  • Uche Iloh (DE)
  • Kai Greer (OT)

2024 Transfer Portal Commitments

  • Warren Burrell (CB, Tennessee)
  • Jackson Hamilton (LB, Louisville)
  • Jackson Hawes (TE, Yale)
  • Keylan Rutledge (OL, MTSU)

Projecting ACC Incentive Pool $$$ (RX; HM)

Projecting ACC Incentive Pool $$$

When Yahoo! Sports reported "How the ACC Expansion Deal Ultimately Got Done", it included not only partial shares for the incoming schools with some money redistributed to the existing members, but also a pool of "success initiative" incentive money for programs that perform at a high level. From the OP:

This [partial shares] frees up more than $50 million in new money from ESPN, which is contractually required to give a Tier 1 TV share to the league for each new member (approximately $24 million per share in 2024, for a total of $72 million). A portion of the new money will be evenly distributed to the original member schools, but an estimated $25-30 million will be placed in a success incentive pool.
The expansion schools will still receive other distributions from the league, and their TV shares will escalate through the course of the Grant of Rights.

Just how much money are we talking here?

Starting in 2024...

  • 3 schools X $24 million/year = $72 million
  • SMU gives all $24M to the ACC $24M
  • Stanford and Cal return 70% $33.6M
  • Total available to redistrib. $57.6M

(article says "more than $50M)
If each ACC school gets $2M x 15 = $30M
,..that leaves in the kitty $27.6M
(OP says $25-30 million)

It's unclear to me whether the "success initiative" began this year or not, and if so, how much money is in the 2023-24 "kitty", but the 2024-25 incentives are nothing to sneeze at.
If one current ACC school got all of the 2024-25 incentive money, that school would take home an estimated...

$24 million TV revenue (tier 1)
+$10 million ACCN revenue
+$2 million redistributed from the newbies
+$27.6 million incentives
+$16 million (estimated) other ACC payouts
$79.6 million from the ACC (maximum)
(not including their own internal revenue like tickets and donations)

I'm not saying any one ACC school will get all of the incentive money - more likely it will be divided about 4 or 5 ways. So maybe a more realistic top revenue for 2024 might be around $57.4 million - still, that's not bad at all!

ACC CG Attendance, 2005-23 (RX; HM)

ACC CG Attendance, 2005-23

As you know by now, the ACC had a new team participate in the conference football championship: Louisville. What you may not know is that gives us almost enough data to calculate which team brings the most fans to Charlotte. First, here are the attendance numbers for all ACC CGs for the last 19 years (has it been that long?):


Realistic ACC Targets For Big 12 Expansion + FSU & Miami Are NOT Big 12 Bound - The Big 12 Watch (youtube; Crystal Ball CFB)

Josh Neighbors shares his thoughts on the future of college sports, particularly conference realignment. He discusses the future of the ACC & why he is skeptical that it could break up in 2024. He then talks about Florida State, Clemson, Miami, UNC & NC State. He shares thoughts on why those schools only have interest for the Big Ten & the SEC. He then discusses the chances that the Big 12 could add Louisville, Pitt, Virginia Tech & others. He discusses the TV implications of adding those schools. He discusses why Brett Yormark should consider these schools & he also touches on the idea of a ACC-Big 12 Merger. Realistic ACC Targets For Big 12 Expansion + FSU & Miami Are NOT Big 12 Bound - The Big 12 Watch Check out the rest of the 365 Sports family of YouTube Channels! 365 Sports, SicEm365, College Basketball 365, NFL on 365, and Dallas Cowboys 365. (; Brumm)

As the 2023 regular season is completed, it's time to take a look at which teams were big winners and losers this year. We're going to look at this by conference, starting with the ACC.


Florida State

The Seminoles are 100% winners this year, I don't care what the CFP committee says. I'm not here to argue whether they should have been in or not, but they did everything they needed to do to qualify for the Playoffs. They ran the table going 13-0, climaxing with an ACC Championship.

The Noles had good wins over LSU, Clemson, Duke, and Louisville and they should be proud of the season they had. Florida State will now have a great opportunity to get a great win vs sixth-ranked Georgia in the Orange Bowl in a couple of weeks.

Dec 2, 2023; Charlotte, NC, USA; Florida State Seminoles head coach Mike Norvell raises the ACC Championship trophy with his players after the game against the Louisville Cardinals at Bank of America Stadium.


Louisville came out of nowhere this year. They weren't on many people's preseason radar, even after hiring Jeff Brohm as their head coach during the offseason. As we see now, they should have gotten more respect before the season started. They came out the gate quickly and started 6-0, beating NC State and Notre Dame in that run.

After that, they were then upset by Pitt, but then won four straight before falling to Kentucky in the regular season finale, and then Florida State in the conference championship game. They still sit at 10-3 with a chance to beat USC in the Holiday Bowl on Wednesday, December 27th.

The Louisville defense celebrated after sacking FSU punter Alex Mastromanno (29) as the Louisville Cardinals faced off against the Florida State Seminoles at Bank of America Field in Charlotte, NC. FSU defeated Louisville 16-6 to win the 2023 ACC Championship. Dec. 2, 2023.

North Carolina State

NC State was a program that received some preseason hype before the 2022 season but underperformed. This preseason, I didn't hear much about them, and maybe that was a good thing. Even during the season, I didn't hear much about them until I checked and they were 8-3 heading into their final game vs. rival North Carolina.

After starting 3-2, the Wolfpack went 6-1 to finish the season. Their losses came against Notre Dame, Louisville, and Duke. All three of those teams were good opponents. They will now take on #25 Kansas State in the Pop-Tarts Bowl.

Nov 12, 2022; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA;North Carolina State Wolfpack tight end Trent Pennix (6) runs after a catch as Boston College Eagles defensive back Jaiden Woodbey (9) pursues during the first half at Carter-Finley Stadium.



Pitt had a very tough season in 2023. Pat Narduzzi and company are only two years removed from an ACC Championship, but they have a long road ahead of them to get back there. The Panthers went 3-9 with bad losses to Cincinnati and Wake Forest.

They didn't have consistency at the quarterback for the whole season and couldn't get much offense going. They scored seven points or less in three games and only scored over 30 once. I think it's safe to say this was a season to forget for the people of Pittsburgh.

Wake Forest

Wake Forest was the team that Pittsburgh beat in that 2021 ACC Championship, and they have faced a similar fate as the Panthers since then. The Demon Deacons finished dead bottom of the ACC as they were 4-8 and 1-7 in conference. Some of their losses include Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech, and Syracuse.

I am excited for 2024 QB Jeremy Hecklinski to get on campus as I think he has a legit chance to make an impact there. He had an incredible senior year and is a candidate for National Player of the Year awards. Could he follow in the footsteps of guys like Sam Hartman? Time will tell.


The Hurricanes didn't do as bad as these other two, but they did underperform again. A lot of people thought Miami might be making the jump when they started 4-0 and beat Texas A&M. They then lost in the most inexcusable way vs Georgia Tech and it was all downhill from there. The Canes finished 7-5, going 3-5 in ACC play.

QB Tyler Van Dyke had an underwhelming year and will now be transferring to Wisconsin. Coach Mario Cristobal has still yet to prove he can win on game days. He is a great recruiter but hasn't been able to fully utilize the talent. We'll see if next season can be any different.


17 places to take a hike on New Year’s Day in Central NY (PS; Featherstone)

Gov. Kathy Hochul is telling New Yorkers to take a hike over the holidays as part of the state’s 13th annual First Day Hikes program.

More than 80 state parks, historic sites, wildlife areas, and canal trails statewide will be open on Jan. 1, 2024, offering nearly 100 different opportunities to clear your head post-New Year’s Eve celebrations.

First Day Hikes are family-friendly, and typically range from one to five miles depending on the location and conditions. There are 17 designated First Day Hike sites in the CNY region, including Clark Reservation State Park in Jamesville.

From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Friends of Clark Reservation will host two guided hikes at the park, including an hour-long walk on mostly flat ground, and a more challenging hike lasting two to three hours. This is a family-friendly event, and friendly dogs are welcome on a leash.

Clark Reservation was voted CNY’s “Best Hiking Spot” in a 2022 Reader’s Choice poll.

A full list of First Day Hikes, location details, pre-registration requirements, and additional information can be found online for Parks, DEC, and Canals. Check the details of your preferred hike and register where required.

While the following locations are offering organized activities, most of New York’s public lands are accessible throughout the winter season.

List of First Day Hikes in CNY and Finger Lakes regions:

  • Bowman Lake State Park/McDonough State Forest, Oxford; 607.775.2545 ext. 121 (several hikes available)
  • Catharine Valley Trail, Watkins Glen; 607.481.0584
  • Chenango Valley State Park, Chenango Forks; 607.648.5251
  • Clark Reservation State Park, Jamesville;
  • Delta Lake State Park, Rome; 315.337.4670 (2 hikes)
  • Fort Ontario State Historic Site, Oswego; 315.343.4711 (guided and self-guided options)
  • Glimmerglass State Park, Cooperstown; 607.643.1275
  • Green Lakes State Park, Fayetteville; 315.637.6111
  • Hemlock-Canadice State Forest, Canadice; 585.259.4505 (2 hikes)
  • Herkimer Home State Historic Site, Herkimer; 315.823.0398
  • Montezuma Audubon Center, Savannah; 315.365.3588
  • Newtown Battlefield State Park, Elmira; 607.732.6287
  • Rogers Environmental Education Center, Sherburne; 607.674.4733 (2 hikes)
  • Selkirk Shores State Park, Pulaski; 315.298.5737
  • Seneca Lake State Park, Geneva; 315.789.2331
  • Taughannock Falls State Park, Trumansburg; 607.387.7041 ext. 131
  • Two Rivers State Park, Waverly; 607.732.6287


Pyramid Management Group is selling the 209-room Embassy Suites hotel near its Destiny USA shopping mall in Syracuse. Rick Moriarty |

Destiny USA to sell Embassy Suites hotel that sits at mall’s doorstep (PS; $; Moriarty)

Destiny USA is making plans to sell the 209-room Embassy Suites hotel built near the huge shopping mall in 2017.

Destiny USA Real Estate LLC, an offshoot of mall developer and operator Pyramid Management Group, is “contemplating” a proposed sale of the seven-story hotel, the company told the Onondaga County Industrial Development Agency in a letter from attorney Robert Smith on Dec. 1.

On Thursday, the agency gave Destiny permission to sell the hotel to EH26 LLC, a limited liability company formed last month.

Robert Petrovich, the county’s economic development director, said the company behind EH26 LLC is Excel Group. That company’s website describes it as an Arlington, Virginia, based private equity firm focused on acquiring and developing premium-brand, limited-service hotels.

No purchase price was disclosed.

The agency’s permission was needed because it approved a 12-year payment-in-lieu-of-tax agreement with Destiny for the hotel. The agreement will save Destiny nearly $7 million in taxes on the $48 million building over the term of the deal.

The agency also agreed to allow the tax deal to transfer to the hotel’s new owner.

Destiny USA will retain a 4-acre portion of the hotel’s parking lot, but it will no longer be part of the tax deal. It will go on the tax rolls.

Destiny USA and the Excel Group did not respond to requests for comment about the pending sale.

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