If there was any sentimentality to quarterback John Kinder's final first day as a student at Lawrence Senior High School, he did a good job of downplaying it.
"It was just like any other first day of school," Kinder said. "But it felt kind of good to walk the halls as a senior."
The Syracuse commit began his senior year Tuesday, one in which he hopes to lead his team to the top of the Long Island Conference.
"We want the LIC without a doubt," Kinder said of his Lawrence club.
After passing for 14 touchdowns and running for 14 more in 2008, Kinder is excited to get back on the field despite the pressure of high expectations. Long Island's Newsday said Kinder "might be the best quarterback on Long Island" and ranked the Golden Tornado No. 1 in their preseason Nassau Conference III preview. In addition, Kinder is Scout.com's No. 53 rated QB and the second highest rated player to commit to Syracuse this recruiting season.
"There's definitely pressure but it doesn't bother me," Kinder said. "Offensively everyone has to be on the same page and defensively we need 11 hats on the ball."
Kinder, who committed to Syracuse in April, watched the Orange's Saturday game against Minnesota and was optimistic about what he saw.
"The team is looking really good," he said. "They made a couple mistakes but they are much improved."