While Antwon Bailey may be diminutive, his production on the football field certainly does not…
Scouting Report on SU recruit Antwon Bailey
Production: The 5-foot-7, 200-pound Bailey is one of the more productive backs you'll find. He rushed 175 times for 1,356 yards and 21 touchdowns as a senior and averaged 33.4 yards per punt return with one touchdown.
"He's been the MVP of our team for three straight years," said St. John's coach Joe Patterson. "He was first-team all-conference for the second consecutive year, was first-team All-Met and Gatorade Player of the Year."
Playing style: "He's short but he's not small. He's fast and powerful but he's also got some wiggle. He makes a lot of plays with his strength. He's versatile. He's very good in pass protection and he uses his size as an advantage," Patterson said.
"Emmitt Smith is my favorite player ever, but I get compared to Ray Rice and Maurice Jones-Drew," said Bailey, who squats 470 pounds.
Underrated: That's the word Bailey uses to describe himself. Despite playing in one of the better private school leagues on the East Coast – the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference – he didn't see a lot of high-major college attention and was rated the No. 193 running back nationally.
"I definitely think that I am underrated coming out of high school. I've been doing well for three years. Last year our conference had 32 Division I athletes, it's not a cupcake league … I just feel like I was looked past."
Leadership: This is one of the strong points with Bailey.
"He was voted captain unanimously. He's got the top GPA on the team and is just a great kid and a great player. One of the things that really helped was our quarterback was inexperienced and Antwon had played some quarterback each of the past two years, so he was able to guide him through some things on the field," Patterson said.
"I led the team vocally and by example," Bailey said. "If things weren't going well I felt like I had to make a play and let them know everything would be alright."
The Syracuse commitment: "When I went up there, I liked the atmosphere and the coaches seemed really good. It seemed like they were ready to get things pointed in the right direction," Bailey said.
Playing time: Like most recruits, Bailey would like to get onto the field quickly. "The coaches said they play the best players, so I'm looking to see what I can do when I get there," he said.
Bailey gives the Orange one more option in their stable of RB's. RB had been a thin position, but like the QB and WR positions, SU is now building some depth at these spots which hopefully bodes well for the future as they rebuild the offense's firepower.
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