Three Syracuse Football Players Named Freshmen All-Americans

Syracuse rookies earned some high praise with their performance this season.
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Three Syracuse football players have been named Freshmen All-Americans by various media outlets. Linebacker Stefon Thompson, the first Orange true freshman linebacker to earn the starting spot out of training camp in 10 years (Dyshawn Davis), was named an All-American by the Football Writers Association of America on Monday. Prior to that, safety Ja'Had Carter was named an All-American by Rivals while cornerback Garrett Williams was honored as an All-American by The Athletic. 

More on each player:

LINEBACKER STEFON THOMPSON

Tackles: 35

Tackles for Loss: 7.5

Sacks: 3.0

Forced Fumbles: 1

SAFETY JA'HAD CARTER

Tackles: 67

Tackles for Loss: 3.0

Forced Fumbles: 1

Fumble Recoveries: 1

Interceptions: 2

Pass Breakups: 3

CORNERBACK GARRETT WILLIAMS

Tackles: 54

Tackles for Loss: 3.0

Sacks: 1.0

Interceptions: 2

Pass Breakups: 10

One silver lining of the 1-10 2020 season was the amount of freshmen that received significant playing time. Syracuse spent much of the season significantly short handed as injuries ravaged the roster. During several games, Syracuse had fewer than 60 scholarship players available. The silver lining to that was the experience gained by freshmen forced into action. 

In some games, Syracuse was starting as many as six freshmen on defense. That experience should help in 2021 with offseason development and participating in the strength and conditioning program. A season of spring ball will also help with their development. 

The Syracuse defense took major strides during the 2020 campaign, thanks in large part to the contributions of freshmen such as those three noted above. Others who made an impact include safety Robert Hanna and linebacker Marlowe Wax.