Not too long ago I mentioned some of the top offensive line prospects in the high school ranks that the Syracuse University football coaches have been checking out. Well, the Orange have also been looking toward the junior college level in an effort to hopefully put together the best possible offensive line for Robert Washington and the rest of the offense.
Syracuse has recently offered two JUCO offensive tackle prospects in particular: Malcolm Pridgeon, and Charles Baldwin.
Pridgeon is a mountain of a man, standing at 6-foot-8, 285 pounds. The 4-star tackle prospect has gotten a lot of looks from power conference teams, holding offers from the likes of Kansas State, Louisville, Kentucky, Ohio State, Rutgers, Purdue, Texas Tech, Virginia Tech, Missouri, and of course, Syracuse. A product of Nassau Community College, Pridgeon is a big, athletic prospect – he’s got a background in basketball, meaning his footwork, combined with his size, have college coaches drooling over his potential.
Baldwin, on the other hand, is nearly as big and has offers from similarly impressive schools. The 4-star product of ASA College (the same junior college that sent Wayne Williams to the Hill) is a 6-foot-6, 305 pound behemoth with offers from Alabama, Georgia, Ole Miss, Oklahoma, Miami, Virginia Tech, and South Carolina, along with Syracuse.
Basically, if Syracuse were to somehow manage to snag both Pridgeon and Baldwin, we’d probably be looking at two day one starters as soon as they get to campus, manning the left and right tackle spots and in all likelihood earning serious looks from the NFL before their careers come to an end. Both tackles have a tremendous combination of size and agility, and will remain two of the most highly sought after junior college prospects in the country through their recruitment.
Offensive line will remain a priority for the Orange through the rest of this recruiting cycle, with Cam DeGeorge already on board in this class, along with Evan Adams, Colin Byrne, Sam Clausman, Cody Conway, and Andrejas Duerig in the class of 2015. That’s a lot of young offensive line talent, but Scott Shafer and his staff will continue trying to build the foundation in the trenches.
It makes sense that Syracuse would be going after a pair of big time junior college transfers in this cycle, given how much youth there will be on the line by the time the class of 2016 gets to campus. With Washington expected to step in and earn immediate playing time, Shafer and Tim Lester will want as much physically mature talent and experience in front of him as possible. Getting players like Pridgeon and Baldwin would allow the younger players to come along more slowly, while also giving Washington and the other skill position players a strong group to play behind.