Syracuse freshman cornerback Duce Chestnut has been nothing short of spectacular in his first five games as a college football player. In five games, Chestnut has 22 tackles, two interceptions and three assists. Pro Football Focus, which rates based on top-level analytics for each position, including position-specific traits, ranked Chestnut as the nation’s top freshman cornerback in the first five games of the season. 2021.

The ranking is not an overall score for the turns, but strictly the cover score for those with at least 100 cover shots so far this season.

Behind Chestnut and completing the top five are Billy Bowman of Oklahoma, Jadon Canady of Tulane, Denzel Burke of Ohio State and Noah Avinger of San Diego State. Bowman was included in the SI99 of the 2021 recruiting class as one of the nation’s top 99 prospects.

Chestnut had a phenomenal interception in Saturday’s game against Florida State in which he jumped a wide receiver screen and managed a dive despite his elbows crashing into the ground with the ball in his hands.

“The instincts were good,” head coach Dino Babers said after the game. “When you make a game like that you have to go for it. He went and the catch he made wasn’t a joke because he caught the ball and the first thing to hit the ground except If I’m wrong, was As a wide receiver, when you catch the ball in this way, your elbows release the ball.

“But he stayed locked up. He trusted himself so much that he stayed locked up, jumped up and then let him go. Where it was like ‘there’s no way you don’t call that. an interception. “He just ran away. A lot of confidence. A lot of moxie. I’m telling you, the capture was a lot harder than you thought. And he made it easy.”