March 9, 2016
The versatile, freshman running back is SU’s top-rated recruit in the Class of 2016.
Name: Moe Neal
Position: Running Back
Hometown: Gastonia, N.C.
High School: Forestview
2015 Stats: As a senior at Forestview High School, Neal rushed for 1,381 yards and 20 touchdowns on 252 carries, and caught 27 passes for 525 yards and nine touchdowns.
2016 Projections: Neal was listed third on the Syracuse Orange’s post-spring depth chart at running back behind Dontae Strickland and Jordan Fredericks. The faster-tempo offense under Dino Babers will lead to more offensive snaps per game, which should translate to some significant playing time for Neal, even if he remains as the third-string running back.
How’d He Get Here: Neal chose SU over Wake Forest in his final decision, and had offers from a long list of other ACC schools (Boston College, Duke, Georgia Tech, NC State), West Virginia, Temple, Akron and a number of others.
He originally committed to the Orange under former coach Scott Shafer, and re-committed once Babers was hired. Neal enrolled at SU in January to get a head start participating in spring practice.
Money Quote: Here’s what fellow running back (and number one on the depth chart) Dontae Strickland had to say about Neal during preseason camp a few days ago:
“He grasped everything pretty quick. The guy’s got cuttability, speed, vision, everything. He’s just a versatile back. I can’t wait to see what he’s going to do this season.”
Links of Wonder: Neal’s home-county paper, the Gaston Gazette, wrote a nice piece during preseason ACC Media Days back in July about how he is poised for success after enrolling early at SU in January. The article features some great quotes on Neal from coach Babers and team captain Jason Emerich.
Tweets of Wonder: Pretty cool:
What Does the Coaching Staff Think of Him?: Well, here’s what Dino Babers had to say about Neal and a couple of his fellow freshman at the preseason ACC Media Days:
“What I will do is I’ll talk about Kenneth Ruff, Rex Culpepper and Moe Neal. Those were our three early midyear admits. All three of those freshman have done a fabulous job of learning the right things to do as far as getting to class and getting on time and representing the university in a proper manner...We’re excited about all three of those freshmen. We think they’re all going to help the family.”
Interesting Nugget O’Interest: Neal is the first player in Forestview High School history to earn a scholarship to a Power Five school.
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