Syracuse football picked up an excellent recruit in Enrique Cruz. The 2021 prospect a 247 four-star offensive lineman, which fills a big gap.
Syracuse football can breathe a big sigh of relief. The Orange struggled at offensive line last season and head into the 2020 season with a lot of question marks. The commitment of 2021 lineman, Enrique Cruz could very well change things in the near future.
Cruz is a very highly rated prospect, currently slotted as a four-star by 247sports and the 41st overall OT by 247sports composite.
The Villa Park, Illinois product is listed at 6-foot-5, 252 pounds, a tad light for his position, but 247sports Director of Scouting, Barton Simmons says this shouldn’t cause too much concern.
Athletic body type that will need to add mass in college. We have not seen in person but film and our intel suggests that length is there and frame is capable of holding the right weight. One of the better movers in this class at offensive line. Eye-popping athleticism running to the perimeter in the screen game and running through small, moving targets. Appears to like contact. Easy feet in pass protection. Can sink his hips and anchor in pass protection. Has some natural strength and power. Film shows very little run blocking. Incomplete evaluation on whether he can play with pad level and drive off the football vertically in the run game. Some questions need to be answered to get comfortable with the complete nature of his skillset but the best case scenario is one of the more talented prospects in the class. Pending more vetting during senior season, we project him as a power five impact starter after some physical maturation with sigifnicant NFL Draft upside.
Simmons even projects Cruz as a 4th-7th round draft pick. Although that’s more than a few years away, it shows his star power and potential to really turn around what’s been a recent lacking position at Syracuse.
Cruz realistically could’ve played for a slew of teams, as he held offers from Arizona State, Louisville, Mississippi State, West Virginia, and plenty of other power conference teams. However, at Syracuse, he has the ability to not only play on a competitive team in the national eye but could potentially play sooner than he may have at some of those other teams.
The SU offensive line is in need of more and better talent and Cruz has the intangibles to fulfill that. He’s now the highest-rated offensive lineman among the five in the Syracuse football class of 2021, which now ranks 45th nationally. That’s the highest it’s been since 2007, according to 247sports’ records.
But more important than any ranking, it shows the Syracuse staff’s willingness to go out and get the best talent possible to fill their needs. The gap at offensive line stuck out like a sore thumb, but instead of settling, Syracuse football went out and got one of the best prospective OTs out there.
It’ll be more than a year until Enrique Cruz takes the field for the Orange, but the clock is anxiously awaiting.