Syracuse football: We’ll learn a lot about returning players for 2022 by Saturday night

Right now, the biggest concern about Syracuse’s orange soccer team is clearly whether or not they can upset the Pittsburgh Panthers and make a game with the ball. However, there are some additional questions looming as well.

One of them is about whether or not Dino Babers will return as head coach – which at least seems to have been decided already. The other is what the players are really about for the 2022 season.

We’ve seen a parade of transfers leave the Orange program both in the latest season and in the 2021 regular season as well, and more could leave through the gate once the final whistle blows against Pete. Some of these trips may be related to playtime. Others may be due to graduation and a desire for a new opportunity. There is also the question of which players can announce the draft.

While there is still plenty of information left to gather and players can certainly change their minds, we already know two players who have stated that they will be back in 2022: Chris Elmore and Chestnut Duce. While Rhino is using a red jersey this season to return for a sixth year, Duce still has three more years of eligibility left after that.

Sean Tucker too She “expects” to come back next year, but he’s getting together with his family to put the finishing touches – something that might sound terrifying. However, with the way the gate operates now, you can’t blame any player for evaluating his options, especially when he’s one of the best running defenders in the country and faced with Orange’s current offense.

But what about the others? Babers have already asked for it Juniors who plan to leave apply last SundaySo we’ll know soon enough who’s leaving and who’s staying. We split the conversation into a few different groups below.


There are seven seniors on the current roster, and Elmore has already chosen to return. So the other six from Syracuse to lose this season are Josh Black, McKinley Williams, Kingsley Jonathan, Cody Roscoe, Iron Service and Abd Adams. We never got complete clarity on his Devaughn Cooper scholarship status, but he also didn’t have residual eligibility anyway.

This is the bulk of the defensive line’s turn, plus an offensive lineman, and one of the most involved receivers on the list at Cooper. This definitely leaves some holes to fill in.


There aren’t many unremarkable seniors on this team, but we’ll wait for the next players’ decisions to see if they’ll be back for another year: Eric Colley, Curtis Harper, Andre Smit, Dakota Davis, Darius Tisdale and Scharrod Johnson.

A year ago, I was betting Szmyt would leave the NFL Draft, but now I’m not so sure. It would be ideal for Cooley, Harper and Davis to all return in light of the depth and/or experience concerns of their respective positions. I wouldn’t blame Johnson for using grad transfer here given how small this offense is in relation to the use of wide receivers.

2022 Juniors

These are the players who are eligible to enlist and who still have a year left in Syracuse or elsewhere if they choose to remain at the college level. There are quite a few major contributors to this list, and they seem to be the group that Dino was most interested in hearing about their 2022 comeback:

  • Luke Benson
  • Matthew Bergeron
  • Chris Bleach
  • Will Frome
  • Isaiah Jones
  • Michael Jones
  • Cooper Lutz
  • Caleb Okechukwu
  • Mark Petri
  • Anthony Coelly
  • Carlos Vitorello

That… a lot of attacking match men and any of those leaving is really painful for 2022 since there are few other players on the roster with any experience. Losing an entire Conference player like Michael Jones would be brutal, and it will be Looks like he’s weighing his options in the NFL (And he is right.)

Okechukwu is set to be a defensive lineman early next year if he returns, so that looks promising to us. It would be ideal not to lose Lutz, Queeley or Benson given the few experienced playmakers in attack.

2023 Juniors

Then there are the 2023 guys who usually only have two years under their belts, but because of the COVID allowances from last year, get some extra time. That’s not everyone qualifies until 2023. Only some of them – like any freshman last year but played last year.

  • Jacob Bradford
  • Adrian Cole
  • Aman Greenwood
  • Steve Linton
  • Neil Nan
  • Garrett Schrader
  • Jason Simmons
  • Garrett Williams

You might notice a large portion of high school in Syracuse above, as well as recurring linebacker contributor Steve Linton and of course, current starter QB Garrett Shrader. With the current initiator Shrader right now, there’s no good reason to look elsewhere. Williams has had a bit of a blast this year, but he could potentially be an NFL player if he chooses the leap. Simmons just arrived by carriage, so it would be surprising to see him go somewhere else again. Bradford is set to be in the starting line-up for the O-line role next year, so it looks like he’s likely to stay.


Of course, other players outside of this group can still move in at any time, and Syracuse can certainly add players as well. But it will be crowded as Babers looks to create their hottest roster to date in Syracuse. And I’m honestly curious about how well the employees are doing when they are already under 70 scholarship players and only have 10 men committed to 2022 so far.

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