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Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Cosentino latest at QB-rich high school

By Jared Shanker

PITTSBURGH -- It is not often a high school program can boast producing two NFL quarterbacks, let alone have two quarterbacks that have thrown for more than 4,000 yards in a single season and play in multiple Pro Bowls.

That high school would be Pittsburgh Central Catholic, and those two quarterbacks are Dan Marino and Marc Bulger.

Perry Hills and Tino Sunseri are the latest quarterbacks to graduate from the school and both spent 2012 on scholarship at a BCS program as well.

J.J. Cosentino is next in line at Central Catholic, the latest quarterback destined to play for a major BCS program and carry on the tradition at the school. The 6-foot-5, 220-pound signal-caller was recently offered by Florida State. Sal Sunseri, the father of Central Catholic alum Tino, is a Seminoles assistant coach and offered Cosentino.

“Coach Sal had my tape [when he coached] at Tennessee and was recruiting me there,” Cosentino said, “and when he went to Florida State he showed Coach [Jimbo] Fisher my film and as soon as he saw it he said ‘Call him up. We’re going to offer.’ ”

J.J. Cosentino
J.J. Cosentino is the latest in the long line of star quarterbacks from Pittsburgh Central Catholic High School.
Akron had offered Cosentino prior, but other than the Zips no other program pulled the trigger on Cosentino before the Seminoles did. Michigan State, Penn State and several other programs were interested but holding off on an offer.

A successful junior season -- his first year at Central Catholic -- on top of Sunseri’s ties to Pittsburgh were enough for Cosentino to land his first BCS offer.

“All the hard work paid off,” he said. “You’re waiting around like what’s going to happen and you finally realize it’s all coming through for you. It’s exciting because you know you’re probably going to play big-time football.”

Cosentino is wasting little time in getting down to Tallahassee for a visit, too. He will fly down to Florida State this coming weekend for a junior day visit.

Snow covers the Pittsburgh landscape for months this time of year, so Cosentino is looking forward to taking in some sun -- amongst other things as well.

“I want to get a relationship with the coaches because I haven’t talked to them yet,” Cosentino said. “I want to look around and see what the school has to offer. I can’t think of a better fit. They run a pro-style offense and have a lot of athletes to throw the ball to down there.”

Penn State has not offered Cosentino, although he was in attendance for the Nittany Lions’ game against Ohio State in the fall. Having just brought in No. 1 2013 quarterback Christian Hackenberg and dealing with scholarship reductions, Cosentino is not sure if an offer will come from Penn State. The Lions have two quarterback offers out for the 2014 class.

“I liked Penn State a lot,” he said. “It was a White Out and it was packed and you can’t beat playing in front of 110,000 people. I like Coach [Bill] O’Brien and Coach [Charlie] Fisher.”

Michigan State has three offers to 2014 quarterbacks but hosted Cosentino for a camp a few years ago and have recruited him ever since.

“They’ve been the first school to recruit me heavy,” he said. “I’ve been in contact with them a lot. They came in the school and said they still like me. Coach [Mark] Dantonio is a great guy and I love all of the coaches up there.”