One of the biggest disappointments in the recruiting cycle of 2015 was when 4-star safety Marquise Blair failed to qualify and was forced to go the junior college route. The 6-foot-3 sensational athlete would likely have gotten onto the 2-deep for Syracuse as a true freshman, but instead went to Dodge City CC in Kansas. However, he very much remains on the Orange radar, this time as a member of the class of 2017.
Not only that, but Blair is back on Syracuse’s radar at a different position: outside linebacker. The hard-hitting Ohio native always had superior size, and is now up to 195 pounds on his 6-foot-3 frame. Last season he earned second team All-Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference honors for perennial JUCO power Dodge City, and 247Sports currently ranks him as the No. 1 OLB prospect in the nation among junior college players.
Needless to say, Blair’s profile is extremely high right now, and he’s going to have an awful lot of suitors as he gets closer to being eligible to transfer to a Division I program. In his first season with Dodge City, he racked up 63 tackles, including 14.0 tackles for loss and 8.5 sacks. He also forced three fumbles and had a pair of interceptions.
Syracuse has linebacker commits from Tyrell Richards, Keirston Johnson, and Kadeem Trotter right now, and is still high on the list of elite Florida prospect Nadarius Fagan. However, that doesn’t necessarily preclude the Orange from going hard after the former SU commit (albeit a player who was committed to the previous staff).
It’s going to be a battle to get a commitment from Blair, but make no mistake, he’ll be an impact player at the outside linebacker position once he finally gets to the FBS level. He’s a potential future pro, and would be a huge addition for the Orange.