Football Recruiting

Robert Washington’s decommitment not swaying cousin Aapri

Courtesy of Aapri Washington

Three-star cornerback recruit Aapri Washington visited Syracuse last October when the Orange lost to Florida State at home.

After four-star running back Robert Washington committed to Syracuse in April and three-star hybrid Moe Neal chose the Orange in August, speculation grew that the two Class of 2016 players would help draw in a third from North Carolina.

Aapri Washington visited campus with Neal, his close friend, and Robert, his cousin, when SU lost to Florida State last October. While news of Robert’s decommitment broke last week, Aapri said he’s still considering Syracuse.

“I mean, it would be cool and it wouldn’t be a problem playing with them,” Aapri said, “but at the end of the day, I have to do what’s right for me.”

The 5-foot-9, 168-pound Class of 2017 cornerback is ranked with three stars by multiple recruiting websites. Some schools are also interested in Aapri as a slot receiver, but for his high school, Mount Island (North Carolina) Charter, he’s playing at quarterback on offense to fill a hole.

Aapri said he’s likely to narrow down to eight schools by the spring and make a verbal commitment before his senior season. The top factors in his decision are education, life outside of football and social life on campus, he said. He currently has offers from Ole Miss, Mississippi State and about 14 other schools in addition to Syracuse.


“What I saw is that they’re trying to be an up-and-coming program,” Aapri said, “and get things to the way they used to be at Syracuse.”

Robert decommitted reportedly due to trust issues with the SU coaching staff. He asked his main recruiter, running backs coach DeAndre Smith, not to contact his father, Robert Washington Sr., but Smith did anyway, according to

Meanwhile, Washington Sr. is one of Aapri’s assistant coaches at Mount Island. Despite Robert’s decommitment, Aapri said he’s making his own impressions of Syracuse.

“They play in a Dome,” he said. “That’s very rare for college football. That did stand out to me. I knew they played in one, but that was my first time like actually witnessing it in a game situation.”

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