February 26, 2009

Lewis talks about recent offer

Rochester (NY) Bishop Kearney prospect Jerome Lewis was invited to the U.S. Army National underclassmen combine in San Antonio, but he could not go and did not have a chance to show off his skills. Schools however have seen enough tape that showed that Lewis has the ability to play at a division one level.

"Syracuse actually offered me on Tuesday," Lewis said. "I was shocked because this is the first contact with them. I have not received any letters or any other contact. I did find out that they came across my tapes and everything and they must have liked what they saw."

Lewis, 6-foot-4, 225 pounds had never spoken with a Syracuse coach until Tuesday and when he got his offer the shock was almost to much for him to handle.

"The coach might have thought that I didn't care, but I was just speechless. Being called out of lunch in our school is a big thing because when I went back to class kids were like what happened what happened."

That walk from the cafeteria to the main office at Bishop Kearney was not a pleasant walk for Lewis because he did not know exactly what was going on. Lewis went in depth the and talked about his long walk.

"What was going through my mind was just trying to recall what I did during the day. I go to a catholic school and we have to carry ourselves a certain way. I am walking to the principals office like oh my god no. Then I walk down and I look up, I was like is that R.D. Long (Lewis's mentor} and I was thinking if he is here I had to have done something wrong. He didn't even look happy he just shook my hand and said come in here with me, I was like oh great. Then he was like we have Syracuse on the phone and they are going to offer you a scholarship. I was like WHAT!"

Most schools are looking for the Empire State product on the defensive side of the ball, but not Syracuse. The Orange feel he would be best if played on offense.

"They said they like the things I do at tight end because they are actually looking at me for tight end. They said the things I do at tight end are exactly what they are looking for, like the way they go across the middle and my size and strength. They can use me in the redzone. He said that I could come in and play early maybe as a freshman at tight end."

When it comes to picking a school location will not matter much, but the academic aspect of a school will. When Lewis arrives on campus at the school of his choice he will have two majors in mind.

"I probably want to major in communications or sociology," Lewis stated. "The communications school was one of the things that Coach Marrone tried to drive at me. They probably do have the best communications program in the nation. Getting a communications degree from there will be pretty highly respected."

A couple weeks ago when asked about having a leader Lewis said that Pittsburgh was his leader. Now with some time passed have things changed at all?

"Pittsburgh is still my leader right now, but we will see where the offers come in from, but I am planning to wait it out. One thing I do know is that I will make a decision before next season."

Could the Orange make a run to top the prospects list?

"Syracuse, I have not had a chance to get on their campus. The reason Pittsburgh is so high is because they have already brought me down twice and showed me around. Syracuse could jump ahead of Pittsburgh I am not going to say that they can't. It all depends on what I see when I go down there and how I feel and how I feel the coaches are going to treat me when it comes down to me as a player, but as a person as well."

This weekend is the Syracuse Junior Day, but another trip was scheduled before the Orange invite arrived. With a prior commitment on the same day as the Syracuse function Lewis is going to try and do both.

"I will try and stop by there, but I will be at Badger sports 7-on-7 in New Jersey. We will be coming back from Jersey at that time, so I will try and stop by there to meet the coaches and everything."

While on his trip to New Jersey Lewis feels good that an offer from the Scarlet Knights could be with him when he lives. Now that the attention is picking up on Lewis what kind of school does he mother like?

"My mom she wants me to stay in the northeast, so I know she will be pushing for Syracuse or a Big East school. When I was growing up she really loved Syracuse because of the distance. She said it is not to close and it is not to far and she really likes it. I know she is excited about the Syracuse offer because that is a school I know she looked at. Boston College, Rutgers, Buffalo are some other schools as well. She wants me to stay close where she can come if I need something and I could just call her and she would come."

One thing is for sure and that is whatever school gets the services of Lewis will have a player who will always work hard to be the best at his position.

"I am not that kind of kid that wants to be like Michael Jordan, I want to be better than Jordan. I actually want to push myself, so if I do make it to the NFL people will forget about Mike Ditka or put me in that class with Mike Ditka, or Dwight Freeney if I go to Syracuse. Forget about Freeney Jerome was a great defensive end at Syracuse or something like that."


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