March 17, 2010

Wednesday Recruitin': 'Spacey,' the Terrelle Pryor repellent

Visit the recruiting board for the latest tally of recruits claiming offers from Penn State for 2011.Nittany Lions recruiting coordinator has been running non-stop to ensure Penn State's 2011 recruiting class packs enough punch

Well, it's finally posted, so here's what normally would have been your Tuesday Recruitin' fix.

I simply could not fathom how many contacts Mike McQueary must have on his cell phone. I realize that he does not contact every recruit Penn State is going after; that's up to the regional recruiters, like LJS and Scrap. But the guy has to be ready to talk with any one of those recruits, at any time. Think about it.

Anyway, on with the update...


New Offers

• Defensive lineman Shawn Oakman (Rivals/Scout/ESPN) out of Lansdowne (PA) picked up a written scholarship offer from Penn State. He currently has the Nittany Lions as a heavy favorite, citing the tradition in Happy Valley. Oakman is also a stud on the basketball court, as you would expect from a guy who stands 6-foot-8, but a lean 240 pounds. Ron Vanderlinden is apparently on his trail.

• All-purpose athlete prospect Darius Jennings (Rivals/Scout/ESPN) was sent his written scholarship offer last week. So, we can officially mark him down.

Recruiting Zuggets

Terrell Chestnut took a big visit to Rutgers last Thursday. The trip included the full deck of pitches, from facilities to academics. Chestnut told
“It’s definitely a school I was interested in, and we’d been in contact with the coaches for a while,” Chestnut said. “I wanted to give my family a feel where I could possibly stay the next four years, and to meet the coaches I would be around.”
Rutgers is an interesting situation to watch this year, not only because of their possible invitation to the Big Ten, but how that might influence recruits along the eastern seaboard. That's pure speculation, sorry. But it's an interesting point to follow over the next 10 months or so.

Marquise Wright was supposed to visit Penn State this past weekend, but plans fell through for no apparent reason. He said that contact with the Nittany Lions' coaching staff has tapered off, but Wright's own coaches were still in touch often with Penn State. This doesn't look like anything serious, especially since he said just two weeks ago that Penn State was his “dream school.”

• Running back Savon Huggins swung south this week, visiting Georgia, Alabama and the rest of the SEC. He does plan to visit Penn State for a practice this spring, but probably won't be at the Blue-White Game on April 24.

• Small planet Cyrus Kouandjio told BWI that he liked Happy Valley because, "I really like the campus, it's nice and big, spacey*, that's what I like about it." But that was only from his Nike Camp workout last year. Kouandjio hasn't been back to Penn State, but all is not lost. His race is still wide open.

*Spacey - adj. "too country"

• Tight end Ben Koyack just received a scholarship offer from LSU. He has been putting together quite a list of suitors. But Penn State is still up top for the Oil City prospect. Right now, Koyack likes Penn State, Notre Dame and Ohio State the most, even though Pitt and Florida are closing the gap.

• Red Bank Catholic tight end Jack Tabb (Rivals/Scout/ESPN) revealed last week that Penn State was his No. 1 team, even though the Nittany Lions haven't extended an offer. There was a rumor floating around that Penn State was verbally hinting at an offer, but that turned out to be false.

2012. Already?

This is what you get with recruiting. There's never a prospect too young to scout. Of course, this isn't nearly like USC's 13-year-old commit, but not exactly what we're used to from Penn State.

James Ross, Jr. (Rivals/Scout/ESPN) is already being heavily recruited by in-state rivals Michigan and Michigan State. He told the Detroit News:
“There is another school, Penn State, that we're looking at,” Ross Jr. said. “They recruited (quarterback) Rob Bolden from our school and he committed to them. So (Penn State assistant) Coach (Ron) Vanderlinden has been talking to me. I actually sent him my highlight tape and he said he really liked it.”
Ross is a 6-foot-0, 200-pound linebacker who's raised eyebrows early in his career, led his Eaglets' defense with 103 tackles, five sacks, five forced fumbles, seven fumbles recovered and an interception.

Eddie Goldman (Rivals/Scout/ESPN) from Edison-Friendship Public Charter in Washington, DC, was told by Larry Johnson, Sr., that a scholarship offer will be extended to him when the time comes. For now, it's just a verbal offer. The 6-foot-4, 300-pound rising junior made more than 40 tackles and three sacks last season, and already runs a sub-five-second forty. Goldman is very, very high on the local team, Maryland, having visited the campus four times.

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