Syracuse football stung by transfer portal but has added some solid pieces

Syracuse football (Mandatory Credit: Dylan Widger-USA TODAY Sports)
Syracuse football (Mandatory Credit: Dylan Widger-USA TODAY Sports) /

In the short period of time between when I wrote this column and when it published, it’s likely that another Syracuse football player has entered the NCAA’s transfer portal – or that the Orange coaching staff, conversely, has plucked a player from another school out of the portal and onto the Hill.

I say this only half kidding, because the transfer portal is simply crazy these days, with guys going in and out of it all the time, just as coaching staffs around the country, too, also see makeovers. Candidly, it’s challenging to keep up!

Sure, it has proven a whirlwind last week or so for Syracuse football, but the ‘Cuse is far from the only college squad to experience coaching and player defections, even if many Orange fans feel that their team is getting stung worse than other groups nationwide.

The ‘Cuse Mob defense, which for a solid chunk of the 2022 season was absolutely sensational, is going to look a whole lot different in 2023 for the Orange.

Syracuse football fans have a lot of developments to digest of late.

Okay, so last week, ‘Cuse defensive coordinator Tony White left for Nebraska. Offensive coordinator Robert Anae bolted for N.C. State. Quarterbacks coach Jason Beck has been promoted to offensive coordinator, while defensive passing game coordinator/safeties Nick Monroe has been named the Orange’s interim defensive coordinator.

That’s merely the coaching news. On the portal front, when I penned this column, I counted at least nine players on the Syracuse football 2022 roster who have elected to transfer.

They are cornerback Duce Chestnut, defensive back Ja’Had Carter, wide receivers Dom Foster, Courtney Jackson and Anthony Queeley, offensive linemen Tyler Magnuson and Chad Schuster, and defensive linemen Josh Hough and Steve Linton.

Undeniably, these are potentially some big losses for the ‘Cuse, but to reiterate, numerous other college teams have seen as many – or more – guys on their own 2022 rosters enter the transfer portal, too.

Star cornerback Garrett Williams said on Thursday via Twitter that he is forgoing his remaining eligibility on the Hill and will declare for the 2023 NFL Draft. That was expected, and Williams likely won’t be the sole ‘Cuse player to depart for professional aspirations.

We’ll have to keep a watchful eye on what star running back Sean Tucker elects to do, for one. Also perhaps offensive lineman Matthew Bergeron, linebacker Mikel Jones and linebacker Marlowe Wax Jr., among others.

A few days ago, news broke that defensive back Jeremiah Wilson had entered the portal, but shortly thereafter, media reports said he had withdrawn his name from the portal.

Getting Wilson to return to Central New York in 2023 would be great. And to the credit of Orange coaches, they’re doing some positive things in the portal as well.

In recent days, Syracuse football has secured at least three transfers that I’m aware of, in defensive back Jaeden Gould from Nebraska, defensive lineman Braylen Ingraham from Alabama, and offensive lineman Joe More from Richmond.

The 6-foot-2, 200-pound Gould was a four-star, top-300 national prospect in the 2022 cycle. The 6-foot-4, 291-pound Ingraham was a four-star player in the 2019 class, while the 6-foot-5, 302-pound More, who hails from Franklin, Tenn., is a graduate transfer.

Lysander Moeolo, a 6-foot-6, 330-pound offensive tackle out of Navarro College in Corsicana, Texas, also recently committed to the ‘Cuse.

As we noted in a column on Thursday, the Orange is getting some analyst buzz for Notre Dame freshman cornerback Jayden Bellamy. The 5-foot-11, 175-pound Bellamy was a consensus three-star player in the 2022 cycle and attended the same high school in New Jersey as Gould (update here: Bellamy announced his commitment to the ‘Cuse via Twitter on Friday).

Besides all of this transfer-related stuff, the early national signing period is fast approaching, as it begins on December 21. Syracuse football, hopefully, will receive signed national letters of intent from its various 2023 commits, including four-star quarterback LaNorris Sellers.

One of the more recent 2023 verbal commitments for the ‘Cuse was from three-star defensive lineman Vincent Carroll-Jackson. The 6-foot-5, 285-pound Carroll-Jackson is a senior at Central Dauphin East High School in Harrisburg, Pa.

Between the upcoming early signing period for the 2023 cycle, the transfer portal comings and goings, the recent staff changes, and the late December battle that the Orange has against Minnesota at the Pinstripe Bowl in New York City, there is a whole heck of a lot going on these days for Syracuse football enthusiasts.

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