Recruiting Big Board

3-star DE Chris Slayton

Syracuse is looking to close out their 2014 class by adding some talented prospects. While there is still a ways to go until signing day, CuseNation.com takes a look at the Orange's top targets going forward.

Syracuse football recruiting has been busy and full of drama lately with the Orange landing a three star quarterback but losing two previously committed prospects to the flip. Who are the top targets for the Orange going forward? We have the answers below.

Thomas Holley
Position:
Defensive Tackle
School (City, State):
Lincoln High School (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
Rating:
The latest:
Syracuse has put the full court press on Holley as the top player in New York. He has already taken official visits to Penn State and Ohio State, but has not made a decision yet. Syracuse is under consideration for an official visit, but it is unclear if he will take more trips.

Holley's relationship with Terrel Hunt is something no other school can use in his recruitment. Still, the Buckeyes and Nittany Lions are the teams to beat.

Profile:

Steve Ishmael
Position:
Wide Receiver
School (City, State):
North Miami Beach High School (North Miami Beach, Fla.)
Rating:
The latest:
Every time Ishmael does an interview, he seemingly has a new top three. There are two teams that continue to be mentioned, however. Syracuse and Illinois appear to be the leaders for the talented receiver.

Despite Syracuse already having three receivers in the mix in 2014, the Orange view Ishmael as the best of the bunch. Expect Ishmael to take an official after the season, and Syracuse to stay in the mix until the end..

Profile:

Chad Mavety
Position:
Offensive Tackle
School (City, State):
Nassau Community College (Garden City, N.Y.)
Rating:
The latest:
Mavety is the best available player on Syracuse's board at a position of need. Despite that, he seems to have cooled on the Orange. If other classes fill up, Syracuse could get back in the picture with the four star prospect.

For now, consider Ohio State the favorite with Mavety who could join fellow New Yorker Curtis Samuel with the Buckeyes.

Profile:

Deion Hallmon
Position:
Cornerback
School (City, State):
Cypress Bay High School (Weston, Fla.)
Rating:
The latest:
Hallmon has had a drama filled recruitment. Syracuse thought they were in a great position to land the two star corner, but he committed to Rutgers before taking any visits. A short time later, he decommitted and reopened his recruitment.

Hallmon was supposed to visit both Syracuse and Wisconsin by now, but neither trip has happened. Both schools are considered out front, but visits will be the key. Expect Hallmon to take an official to Syracuse sometime in December.

Profile:

Mike Johnson
Position:
Cornerback
School (City, State):
Countryside High School (Clearwater, Fla.)
Rating:
The latest:
Johnson is taking his recruitment slow right now, as he has yet to trim his list further than his top ten. However, he only has one official visit scheduled, and that is to Syracuse. The Orange covet Johnson's athleticism and cover skills.

Syracuse seems to have built up a strong rapport with the three star corner. Offensive coordinator George McDonald is up to his old tricks as he tries to pull a talented Sunshine State product away from home town Florida State, among others.

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Nile Sykes
Position:
Linebacker
School (City, State):
Montini Catholic High School (Lombard, Ill.)
Rating:
The latest:
Sykes is the top linebacker on the board for Syracuse and becomes a bigger priority with the loss of Jason Cabinda. He has set his official visit with the Orange for December 6-8, though a commitment on the trip isn't likely.

Missouri has come on strong lately, and Iowa State has always been a school of interest. This battle will likely come down to Syracuse and those two programs. The Orange will have their shot to make an impression, but the Tigers should be considered the slight favorite.

Profile:

Chris Slayton
Position:
Defensive End
School (City, State):
Crete-Monee High School (Crete, Ill.)
Rating:
The latest:
With Harold Landry recommitting to Boston College, Syracuse's focus at defensive end has shifted to Slayton. Don't let those developments fool you, Slayton has always been a priority for the Orange. He is just a more important prospect at this point.

Slayton has several schools after him, but should be taking a visit to Syracuse at some point. That will be key to see if the Orange can make a big impression and pull away from schools that are closer to home.

Profile:

Tommy Mister
Position:
Running Back
School (City, State):
St. Rita High School (Chicago, Ill.)
Rating:
The latest:
Mister is currently committed to Iowa State, but has admitted he will be taking official visits elsewhere. Michigan State, Indiana and Syracuse are the three primary targets for those trips.

Current Syracuse commit and high school teammate of Mister, Lamar Dawson, talks to the Iowa State commit daily about flipping to the Orange. The official visit will be the key, as Mister is looking for the place that feels most like home.

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Micquell Cotton
Position:
Safety
School (City, State):
St. Rita High School (Chicago, Ill.)
Rating:
The latest:
Cotton's recruitment has seemed to be nearing an end at various points during the summer. However, with the lack of visits he was able to take, Cotton slowed things down. One of the schools that he wants to visit is Syracuse.

The Orange would like to get Cotton on campus to see if they can make an impression. Still, you get the feeling that Cotton may prefer to stay closer to home. If Syracuse is able to grab a few defensive back commitments before Cotton visits, they could move on.

Profile:

Zeek Rodney
Position:
Defensive Tackle
School (City, State):
South Pointe High School (Rock Hill, S.C.)
Rating:
NR
The latest:
Rodney jumped onto the Syracuse radar late, and the offer may be indicative of where the Orange feel things with Holley are headed. Syracuse is battling Boston College, Marshall and Toledo for Rodney.

Despite not being in contact for a long period of time, Syracuse was already able to schedule an official visit with the defensive tackle prospect. If the Orange make a big impression, they could land their interior defensive lineman for this class.

Profile:

Cordell Hudson
Position:
Cornerback
School (City, State):
Largo High School (Largo, Fla.)
Rating:
The latest:
Hudson has already officially visited Iowa State, and came away very impressed. They should be considered the leader at this point. But Rutgers and Syracuse are both in strong pursuit of the talented corner.

He will visit Syracuse the weekend of December 6th and Rutgers the week after. His decision will come shortly after that. Education, specifically the engineering program, will be a huge factor in his decision.

Profile:

Tim Gardner
Position:
Offensive Line
School (City, State):
Milford Academy (New Berlin, N.Y.)
Rating:
NR
The latest:
Gardner is looking at five schools right now. Ohio State, Miami, USC, Syracuse and Rutgers. He is trying to take officials to each school, but is still waiting for the offer from USC.

Ohio State is the favorite to keep Gardner after he was committed there out of high school. But if Syracuse can get him on campus, they can attempt to make an impression. He could be the top offensive line target for Syracuse with Benzschawel flipping and Mavety not a realistic option.

Profile:

Chasz Wright
Position:
Offensive Tackle
School (City, State):
Milford Academy (New Berlin, N.Y.)
Rating:
The latest:
Wright unofficially visited the Syracuse campus earlier this month. With Benzschawel flipped to Wisconsin, the Orange contacted Wright to ramp up their interest. They still haven't offered, an indication that Gardner and Mavety could be bigger priorities.

Still, he could be the most realistic option going forward. The one time UConn commit would give Syracuse a major look if they pulled the trigger with an offer.

Profile:

JaWhaun Bentley
Position:
Linebacker
School (City, State):
Dematha Catholic High School (Hyattsville, Md.)
Rating:
The latest:
Syracuse is one of three schools in hot pursuit of the talented linebacker. Iowa and hometown Maryland being the others. With the flip of Jason Cabinda, Bentley jumps further up the board with Syracuse wanting five total linebackers in this class.

Syracuse has to get Bentley on campus for a visit, and he may be difficult to pull from the Terps. You could be hearing more about interest from both sides going forward.

Profile:

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