The start of Syracuse wide receiver signee Umari Hatcher's senior season at Freedom High School (Virginia) was delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic. This past weekend marked the season opener for Freedom when they hosted Forest Park. The game went well for Freedom and Hatcher.
Hatcher finished with four receptions for 180 yards and four touchdowns as Freedom blew out Forest Park 55-14. It was a strong first performance for Hatcher, who was one of Syracuse's biggest recruiting wins in the 2021 class. Hatcher signed with the Orange back in December.
"I just liked them a lot," Hatcher told SI All-American's John Garcia Jr. at the Battle Miami 7v7 event in January. "They liked me a lot. We're going to make things happen."
Without a season this past fall, Hatcher worked hard behind the scenes to develop his game and get ready for the eventual start of his final year of high school ball. Clearly that hard work paid off.
"Just worked out at home," Hatcher said. "Just practiced every other day. Worked at the field, sometimes by myself."
The 6-4, 175 pound wide receiver committed to Syracuse in September before signing with the Orange three months later. Hatcher picked Syracuse over offers from East Carolina, Indiana, Liberty, Maryland, Michigan State, North Carolina, Penn State, Temple, Virginia, Virginia Tech and others.
Hatcher was one of three wide receivers to sign with Syracuse as part of the 2021 recruiting class, along with Oronde Gadsden and Kendall Long. Each has great size and length at 6-4, 6-3 and 6-3, respectively.