football Edit

Recruiting Preview: Blue-White Game

Marquis Wilson (left) and Tyler Rudolph (right) pose with PSU commit Keaton Ellis during the Feb. 3 Jr. Day.
Marquis Wilson (left) and Tyler Rudolph (right) pose with PSU commit Keaton Ellis during the Feb. 3 Jr. Day.

Official Visitors

James Franklin is wasting little time taking advantage of the NCAA's new visit rule, as he and his assistants will host 10 prospects for an official visit this weekend. Most arrived on campus Friday evening, although the actual visits won't technically begin until Saturday morning. That allows nearly all of those prospects to stick around until Sunday evening, meeting with the staff and touring campus.

Out of those players, it looks as if the Lions are serious contenders with RB Devyn Ford, DE Zach Harrison, DB Tyler Rudolph and CB Marquis Wilson. When you include camp last summer, both Rudolph and Wilson will be visiting Penn State for the fourth time in less than a year. The Lions also offered the Connecticut pair before most other top programs, giving Franklin and his staff a leg up when it comes to building relationships.

As for Ford and Harrison, there's still work to be done, but the Lions are serious contenders with both. In addition to PSU, Ford is primarily considering Virginia Tech and Ohio State. He's tentatively set to make a decision next month, so this could very well be his final trip to State College before he declares. Many have considered Ohio State the favorite with Harrison for months now, but the Lions can't be ruled out. This will be Harrison's fourth visit to State College since March 2017.

Penn State will also host a few prospects from outside the region, including CB Jaden Davis, from Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., LB Owen Pappoe and RB Ronald Thompkins, both from Loganville, Ga., and WR Ja'Markis Weston, from Clewiston, Fla. Penn State has been working on Weston ever since Ja'Juan Seider joined the staff. He's currently committed to Florida, but that may not last much longer. He and Seider have an excellent relationship, so we wouldn't be surprised if the Lions emerge as a serious player for Weston. As for Davis, he appears to be fairly wide open still, visiting Clemson, Florida, Miami, Oklahoma and now Penn State in recent months.

Thompkins is another player to watch closely. He's already noted that the Lions are one of his Top 5 schools and he has a longstanding relationship with Seider dating back to his time at Florida. Pappoe has spoken highly of Franklin's accomplishments, but most believe he's destined to stay down south. He's also set to make his decision in less than two weeks from now, May 1. Auburn, Georgia and LSU are the three schools he's visited recently.

DT Mazi Smith and Ath. Cam'Ron Kelly are the other visitors to note. Kelly has taken a few visits to Penn State over the past year. He's also taken official visits to Washington State and Oklahoma in recent weeks. Clemson is a serious player for Kelly, but the Lions are in a better spot than some may believe. He's planning to make his decision in August. As for Smith, Michigan, Notre Dame and Ohio State are the top contenders, but he's been saying for months now that he wants to check out Penn State more than any other school. This is the staff's chance to make a great first impression.

OL Caedan Wallace will be one of a few offensive lineman that are on commitment watch Saturday.
OL Caedan Wallace will be one of a few offensive lineman that are on commitment watch Saturday.

Commitment Watch

It's been nearly six months since Penn State last earned a commitment in the 2019 class. That seems like an eternity when you consider the success Franklin and his staff have had in recent years.

That should come to an end this weekend.

Before last year's Blue-White Game, Penn State added offensive lineman Nana Asiedu to its Class of 2018. The year before that, they added OL CJ Thorpe and Robert Martin.

That pattern could continue this upcoming weekend, as OL Caedan Wallace, Saleem Wormley and Jakai Moore are all set to be on campus. Moore earned an offer from Penn State in January and has since taken two unofficial visits to University Park. He was on commitment watch during his last visit in March, so he'll once again be under the microscope this weekend. As for Wormley, he earned an offer while on campus for Junior Day, March 24. He and his mother then returned last weekend for a full tour of campus and facilities. With that said, Wormley announced Thursday evening that he scheduled an official visit to Notre Dame in June. Penn State won't accept a commitment if he's planning to go through with that visit, so Wormley would have to cancel that trip to South Bend.

Out of the three lineman, Wallace may be the one to watch the closest. Since the fall, he's been open about the fact that the Lions sit in a great position. He's also taken more visits to Penn State than any other school, including a low-key trip to campus last month to watch practice. Could this be the weekend he finally makes a move? It wouldn't surprise us.

Penn State also sits in a great position with the two Connecticut defensive backs, Wilson and Rudolph. Clemson has become a serious player for Rudolph following his visit with Dabo Swinney and his staff last weekend, but we still like PSU's chances. Both he and Wilson will be visiting Penn State for the fourth time this weekend, which is more than any other school.

Two other names that we'll always watch for commitments every time they visit are WR John Metchie and LB Andre White. Both Metchie and White have made it clear that they want to see more schools this summer, and that's what we expect them to do. With that said, both have also been on campus multiple times since the start of 2018, so we'll always monitor the pair when they make it to Happy Valley.

2020 WR Julian Fleming is set to visit Penn State for the second time this month, fourth time since the summer.
2020 WR Julian Fleming is set to visit Penn State for the second time this month, fourth time since the summer.

Notable Prospects

BWI has confirmed more than 30 prospects that are expected to attend Saturday and already hold a scholarship offer from the Nittany Lions. Here are some other players to keep an eye on.

- 2019 TE Jahleel Billingsley will be returning to Penn State for the second time in 2018, as he previously attended the Feb. 3 Junior Day. Many believe that Illinois has surged to the top lately, but the Lions have continued to make a major push.

- 2019 Ath. DeMarcco Hellams last visited Penn State in October for the game against Michigan. Since then, he's taken two visits to both Clemson and Virginia Tech. He also visited Alabama in March.

- 2019 DE Adisa Isaac will be taking his his second visit to Penn State since the start of 2018, third total. He's coming off an unofficial visit to Michigan in March and an official visit to Texas A&M last weekend.

- 2019 DT Rodas Johnson is expected to visit Penn State for the first time. He's kept to himself in recent months, so it's tough to get a feel for where he stands. Obviously a good sign for the staff that he's set to make a visit this weekend.

- 2019 DT David Ojabo will return to Penn State for his second visit this month. The Scotland native earned an offer from Franklin back on April 7 during his first unofficial visit to University Park. Considering his ties to Blair Academy, the Lions should be considered an early favorite.

- 2020 CB Luke Hill will be visited Penn State for the third time. He has been on campus for a camp before and also attended the game against Indiana in 2017. He'll likely be a Rivals250 prospect.

- 2020 WR Julian Fleming will be visiting Penn State for the second time this month, as he previously checked out spring practice on April 2. Fleming also recently visited Alabama and Georgia. Former PSU WR coach Josh Gattis continues to make a big push with Fleming. That could be something to watch.

- 2020 WR Rakim Jarrett will be on campus for a third time this weekend. He previously camped last summer and saw the game against Indiana in the fall. He's still wide open but is one of the region's top receivers next year.

- 2020 RB MarShawn Lloyd will be visiting Penn State for the second time since February. The Lions sit in a great position early in his recruitment.

- 2020 DT Tre' Williams will be visiting Penn State for the first time. It's a good thing that he is, as the New England prospect is quickly emerging as one of the best defensive tackles in the entire country for 2020.


Complete Visiitor List

April 21 - Blue-White Game

Penn State Commits

LS Matt Aloni - Massapequa, N.Y. - Plainedge - Walk-On

OL Nana Asiedu - FILM- Stafford, Va. - North Stafford

LS Kevin Cahill - Summit, N.J. - Summit - Walk-On

WR Brandon Clark - State College, Pa. - State College - Walk-On

DT Judge Culpepper - FILM- Tampa, Fla. - Plant

OL Collin De Boef - State College, Pa. - State College - Walk-On

OL Bryce Effner - FILM- Aurora, Ill. - Metea Valley

CB Keaton Ellis - FILM - State College, Pa. - State College - 2019

WR Daniel George - FILM- Oxon Hill, Md. - Oxon Hill

DT Aeneas Hawkins - FILM- Cincinnati, Ohio - Moeller

K Vlad Hilling - Hollidaysburg, Pa. - Hollidaysburg - Walk-On

TE Pat Freiermuth - FILM- North Andover, Mass. - Brooks School

LB Charlie Katshir - FILM- Mechanicsburg, Pa. - Cumberland Valley

QB Grayson Kline - FILM- West Lawn, Pa. - Wilson - Walk-On

QB Will Levis - FILM- Middletown, Conn. - Xavier

DB Jordan Miner - FILM- Wesley Chapel, Fla. - Wiregrass

QB Ta'Quan Roberson - FILM- Wayne, N.J. - De Paul Catholic - 2019

Saf. Cody Romano - Blair, N.J. - Blair Academy - Walk-On

WR Justin Shorter - FILM- Monmouth Junction, NJ - South Brunswick

RB Ricky Slade - FILM- Woodbridge, Va. - C.D. Hilton

P Cade Pollard - Boerne, Texas - Champion - Walk-On

K Jake Pinegar - FILM- Ankeny, Iowa. - Centennial

OL Rasheed Walker - FILM- Waldorf, Md. - North Point


2019 - OFFICIAL VISITS

CB Jaden Davis - FILM - Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. - St. Thomas Aquinas ***

RB Devyn Ford - FILM - Stafford, Va. - North Stafford ***

DE Zach Harrison - FILM - Lewis Center, Ohio - Olentangy Orange ***

Ath. Cam'Ron Kelly - FILM - Chesapeake, Va. - Oscar Smith ***

LB Owen Pappoe - FILM - Loganville, Ga. - Grayson ***

CB Tyler Rudolph - FILM - Oaksdale, Conn. - St. Thomas More ***

DT Mazi Smith - FILM - Kentwood, Mich. - East Kentwood ***

Ath. Ronald Thompkins - FILM - Loganville, Ga. - Grayson ***

WR Ja'Markis Weston - FILM - Clewiston, Fla. - Clewiston ***

CB Marquis Wilson - FILM - Windsor, Conn. - Avon Old Farms ***


2019 - UNOFFICIAL VISITS

DT Antonio Alfano - FILM - Rahway, N.J. - Rahway ***

OL Thomas Aronokhale - FILM - Wheeling, W.Va., Linsly School

TE Jahleel Billingsley - FILM - Chicago, Ill. - Phillips ***

Saf. JaQuan Brisker - FILM - Scranton, Pa. - Lackawanna College ***

OL Dallas Fincher - FILM- Kentwood, Mich. - East Kentwood

Ath. DeMarcco Hellams - FILM - Hyattsville, Md. - DeMatha ***

DE Adisa Isaac - FILM - Brooklyn, N.Y. - Canarsie ***

DT Rodas Johnson - FILM - Columbus, Ohio - St. Francis DeSales ***

DE Anthony Johnson - FILM - Jeannette, Pa. - Jeannette

DB Quinten Johnson - FILM- Washington, D.C. - St. John's College High ***

WR John Metchie - FILM - Hagerstown, Md. - Saint James School ***

OL Jakai Moore - FILM - Nokesville, Va. - Patriot ***

DT David Ojabo - FILM - Blair, N.J. - Blair Academy ***

Ath. Amir Richardson - FILM - Morgantown, W.Va. - University

OL Walter Rouse - FILM - Silver Springs, Md. - Sidwell Friends

QB Isaac Rumery - FILM - Clearfield, Pa. - Clearfield

OL Caelan Shepard - FILM - Arnold, Md. - Broadneck

Ath. Osita Smith - FILM- Columbia, Md. - Wilde Lake

LS Austin Sullivan- Slate Hill, N.Y. - Minisink Valley

Saf. Caleb Tate - FILM- Tampa, Fla. - Tampa Catholic

LB Mohamed Toure - FILM - Pleasantville, N.J. - Pleasantville

OL Xavier Truss - FILM - Warwick, R.I. - Bishop Hendricken ***

OL Caedan Wallace - FILM - Princeton, N.J. - Hun School ***

LB Andre White - FILM - Harrisburg, Pa. - Harrisburg ***

OL Saleem Wormley - FILM - Smyrna, Del. - Smyrna ***


2020

OL Alex Atcavage - FILM- Honesdale, Pa. - Honesdale

WR Austin Brinkman - FILM - Bel Air, Md. - John Carroll

RB Kobe Brish -Schuylkill Haven, Pa. - Schuylkill Haven

WR Julian Fleming - FILM - Catawissa, Pa. - Southern Columbia ***

CB Luke Hill - FILM - Washington, D.C. - St. John's College High ***

WR Rakim Jarrett - FILM - Washington, D.C. - St. John's College High ***

Saf. Sanoussi Kane - FILM- Blairtown, N.J. - Blair Academy

RB MarShawn Lloyd - FILM - Hyattsville, Md. - DeMatha ***

OL Jake Lugg - FILM - Wexford, Pa. - North Allegheny

OL Chris Mayo - FILM - Highstown, N.J. - The Peddie School

DL Bryce Mostella - FILM- Kentwood, Mich. - East Kentwood

Saf. Lonnie Rice - FILM- Wyncote, Pa. - Bishop McDevitt

WR Malik Scott - FILM- Bel Air, Md. - John Carroll

QB Evan Simon -Manheim, Pa. - Manheim Central

LB Darryl Williams - FILM - Smyrna, Del. - Smyrna

DT Tre' Williams - FILM - Oakdale, Conn. - St. Thomas More ***


2021

QB Liam Clifford - FILM- Cincinnati, Ohio - St. Xavier

Ath. Derrick Davis - FILM - Monroeville, Pa. - Gateway ***

RB Johnny Martin - FILM - Blackwood, N.J. - Highland Regional

RB Evan Pryor - FILM - Charlotte, N.C. - Ardrey Key

OL Landon Tengwall - FILM - Laurel, Md. - St. Vincent Pallotti ***

LB Jeremiah Trotter Jr. - FILM - Philadelphia, Pa. - St. Joseph's

RB Bobby Walchak - FILM- Pottsville, Pa. - Pottsville

LB Aaron Willis - FILM - Baltimore, Md. - St. Frances


*** - Holds a Penn State scholarship offer