it's safe to say Syracuse is recruiting Palm Beach (Fla.) Dwyer prospect Malik Brown pretty hard.
Assistant coach John Anselmo was on the phone with him during the day on Monday, and the two finalized plans for Brown to visit Syracuse officially this coming weekend. Hours later, Scott Shafer showed up at his door for an in-home visit – the first such event for the defensive end prospect.
"It was just really nice, to meet the coach in person finally and getting to know him as a person," he said of the in-home visit, which lasted "about" two hours. "It was about an hour and thirty minutes of ‘hey, I'm coach Shafer.' He was just introducing himself, giving his background and telling us how he coached.
"The other thirty minutes was about football."
After the personal feel to the meeting, Brown was impressed by the truth Shafer spoke.
"Probably how realistic he was, he didn't beat around the bush or anything," he added on what stood out. "He gave it to me blunt and raw. He said he would get on me, and he wouldn't be nice. He told me how he would coach me and how he was.
"That's what I like."
Brown, who stands 6-foot-3, 215 pounds, is being recruited by Shafer and company as a defensive end and outside linebacker prospect. That same hybrid role is what was pitched during the recruiting portion of the visit.
"He was telling me what NFL players have come through the program and he was giving me the past jobs he had and how good of a program Syracuse is," Said Brown. "Academically, as well."
While the Orange has always been mentioned with Brown, Mississippi State and USF have as well. Did the visit change perception?
"Syracuse has been high on the board since they got there, and that hasn't changed," he maintained. "They're still high…My mind is still open to everybody."
Both the Bulls and Bulldogs are likely to receive official visits from Brown as well, but neither trip has been set up. But one school, which made it clear on Monday, is recruiting the Floridian the hardest and he is excited about the upcoming official visit to Central New York.
"I'm just going to take in whatever they show me," he said in anticipation. "I haven't seen any of Syracuse yet, so I want to see what they have to offer."
The one component of Syracuse football Brown knows about is Julian Whigham. The freshman defensive back has seen some early playing time for the Orange, one year after leading the same defense Brown starred on in 2012 at Dwyer.
"He tells me how much he likes the school and stuff but he keeps it real with me as well," admitted Brown. "He wants me to choose the school that's best for me but he tells me how much he loves it and how it's a perfect fit for him.
"With him telling me that, I have to look into it more."
Whigham will likely host Brown on his official visit to Syracuse over the weekend. The versatile defender finished his senior season with approximately 11 sacks and 17 tackles for loss among his 60 overall tackles.
Malik Brown is seeing his recruitment pick up as the football season winds down, and he was able to set his first official visit on Monday. Hours later, he had his first in-home visit. Both milestones were centered on Syracuse, and the talented Floridian details it all inside.
Def. coordinator Scott Shafer sits down with Fla. DE