Syracuse lost out on one of their bigger verbal commitments Wednesday, as three star defensive end Malik Brown has chosen the Tennessee Volunteers over the Syracuse Orange.
Malik was committed to the Orange, but reopened his recruiting when former Syracuse coach Doug Marrone and assistant Steve Morrison left the program following the Pinstripe Bowl. Brown was widely considered to be a solid college prospect at defensive end, and could have really helped Syracuse out in the coming seasons. This is the third highly touted recruit to abandon the Orange since the coaching changes, with running back Augustus Edwards backing out of his commitment deciding between Miami and Florida State, and quarterback Zach Allen from Texas who is committed to TCU.
The recruiting hits just keep on coming for Syracuse, which happens to any school that loses their coach so late in the recruiting season. The defections just add to the frustration of Syracuse fans, who will undoubtedly be playing the “what if” game now that all of these kids are going to other big time programs.
We will never know what the Orange may have done had Doug Marrone remained at Syracuse and kept this recruiting class in tact. The class was one of excitement and promise for Orange fans who were finally starting to see Syracuse turn the corner both on the field and in the recruiting game.
Don’t get me wrong; I am by no means giving up on this class or this program going forward. I personally believe that recruiting rankings outside of the top 50-100 players are meaningless, and these players ca very easily standout and make some noise in the ACC. But the fact that these players Syracuse lost are to schools in the ACC, Big XII, and the SEC, it seems pretty clear to me that these kids must be able to play, and it would have been great to see them in the Dome.