Chicago (IL) De La Salle Institute OG Aaron Roberts is the top interior lineman on Syracuse's board for the 2014 class. He recently took a visit to Illinois, one of the schools in his top two. A few days after the visit, he received a phone call from Syracuse offensive line coach Pat Perles to make sure the Orange were still in the running for his services.
"He was just checking in on me," Roberts recalled. "We haven't talked in like a week or so. He was just checking in on me to see how my Illinois visit went and seeing if I was OK. Just checking in on me.
"I was telling him that I saw the academic part of the school and stuff and the facilities. He was just making sure that Syracuse was still there and that I wasn't going to commit to Illinois before checking out Syracuse."
The relationship between the two has continued to develop throughout the recruiting process. When they spoke on Thursday, Roberts assured Coach Perles that he was still going to visit before a decision is announced.
"I told him I'm still coming to Syracuse for sure," Roberts said. "I wasn't cancelling my trip even though Illinois tried to get me to commit and stuff. I just told him I'm definitely still coming out to Syracuse.
"He's a great coach so I definitely want to talk to him face to face before committing anywhere. I know I like a school, one of the two, a lot and I just want to check out Syracuse to see what they're about."
Specifically during the visit, Roberts is looking to get a feel for the intricacies of the Syracuse program. What he finds out could be the deciding factor in which school he chooses.
"I want to hang out with the players and figure out what they think about the school," Roberts explained. "Then I want to talk to Coach Shafer face to face. We've talked on the phone a lot but I want to talk to him face to face.
"I want to talk to the academic counselor and see how all that works out. Just get a feel for Syracuse while I'm there."