March 25, 2011

Friday Recruitin' - Penn State Recruiting Update 3/25

In the business world, people say that "the first million is always the hardest." In recruiting, that can be translated as "the first commit is always the hardest." Not that actually getting the first is any easier or harder than the others; the staff still has to put in the requisite amount of work. But once that first verbal commitment is made, fans breath a bit easier and the recruiting season really starts to pick up.

On Saturday, March 19, during his visit to Penn State, Ohio offensive lineman Anthony Stanko became the first commitment for the Nittany Lions' 2012 class. He is a solid three-star (maybe even four once more evaluations, camps, and tapes are reviewed) lineman. But what makes him a great first commitment is that Anthony, by all reports, is the kind of recruit that will go out and actively recruit on behalf of Penn State. And with an increased talent pool in Ohio this year coupled with in-state power Ohio State's low scholarship quota, any extra help in Ohio is greatly appreciated. Penn State currently has four verbal offers out to Ohio players, and all of the players are Top 40 players in the state.

Recruiting News - Offers, Visits, and Other Information
  • As stated, Stanko committed during his visit on 3/19. With him on the trip were vaunted PA (Harrisburg/Bishop McDevitt) DE Noah Spence ($), PA (Clairton/Clairton) WR/DB Trenton Coles ($), and Spence's teammate LB Brock Dean. Only Spence had an offer, and neither of the other two received offers this weekend.
  • While last weekend was an impressive collection of talent on campus, this weekend will be the one to keep an eye on. Penn State's pseudo Junior Day will take place on 3/26, with 20+ recruits in attendance. Stay tuned to for any commitment news.
  • Similarly, Michigan will host an impressive list of talented recruits this weekend. Only one of their visitors has a PSU offer (DB Wayne Morgan; QB Zeke Pike's PSU offer is questionable, but since there is less than zero chance that Pike commits to PSU, it's a moot point), though some of the others are receiving PSU interest. (You'll notice a lot of Michigan updates in Friday Recruitin', partially because we like to keep tabs on our B1G brethren, but also because TomVH, et al. do a great job of tracking UM recruiting.)
  • Two new offers went out last week. One was reported in the last Friday Recruitin' (NJ (Ramsey/Don Bosco Prep) DE Darius Hamilton, though the offer is questioned by other sites), and the other is AL (Oxford/Oxford) LB Kwon Alexander. Alexander is a very long shot, but his offer represents a new strategy thought to be employed by the PSU staff - throw an offer out there, and if interest is returned, invest more resources.
  • GA (Stone Mountain/Stone Mountain) LB Markus Eligwe has been offered, but that's about as far as his connection with PSU will go. See the comment just above this one about throwing offers against the wall and seeing what sticks.
  • Michigan broke through the mold as well, getting their first Class of 2012 commitment yesterday. Ben Braden, a 6'6", 285 pound offensive lineman, is from Rockford, MI and also held offers from Wisconsin and Michigan State.
Not much to report this week, as it seems to be the calm before the storm. One player has already been on campus ($), while it has been reported that two very important others are there now. Stay tuned throughout the weekend in case anything happens. For those taking bets out there, keep your eyes specifically on Chris Muller-related news. The 6'6", 287 pound Mose Schrute look-alike is my pick for next to commit.

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