Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Not in a New York state of mind
By Jamie Newberg
If Syracuse is hoping to keep New York ESPNU 150 Watch List defensive back Wayne Morgan at home, it has its work cut out for it.
The Brooklyn (N.Y.) Erasmus High star has two other schools in front right now.
"Michigan and Rutgers are my top two schools right now," Morgan said. "I visited Michigan and it was a great trip, a great visit. I like the school, campus and facilities. The coaches were wonderful. I also like Rutgers, especially the coaches and the team.
"Everyone is chasing those two schools."
Morgan, 5-foot-11 and 195 pounds, said he has double-digit offers, including ones from Alabama, Penn State, Miami, UConn, Maryland and Boston College in addition to Syracuse, Michigan and Rutgers.
"I wanted to go to the Syracuse spring game but I couldn't catch a ride. I know I will be going there this summer. I am anxious to check them out because I need to get to their campus," he said. "I know coach [Doug] Marrone. He's a cool coach. I just need to get up there and see for myself. I have been following them. I like the direction of the program."
Morgan also wants to see Miami and Oregon.
"Miami has offered but Oregon has not," Morgan said. "Oregon is recruiting me, but they just haven't offered."
Versatility -- he can play either cornerback or safety -- is one reason these schools are chasing after Morgan.
"Wayne's game is about strength and speed," said Erasmus coach Danny Landberg. "This is a great player with the versatility to play anywhere in the secondary."
"I am a safety here," Morgan said. "But I am being recruited by everyone to play cornerback. Don't get me wrong, I love playing safety. I play free safety for my high school team. But I like the pressure of playing corner. I am physical and have good size. I know how to react to the ball. I am a good tackler and I can really run."
But he brings more to the table than just his skills on the field.
"He means a lot to our team and to me personally," Landberg said. "He means a lot to the younger kids. It's important that kids see him training and working and know with that kind of effort that [being recruited] can happen for everyone.
Morgan is unsure when he will make his decision. It could be soon, or it could be months from now.
"The decision will come when I figure it out," Morgan said. "I don't have a timetable. I am looking for a school where I feel comfortable around the coaches and players. I want to play not too far from home. Also the academics are very important. I have to go to a good school, hit the books and get a good education. You never know what can happen playing football."
Jamie Newberg has been covering recruiting in the Southeast and nationally for 19 years. He can be reached at email@example.com.