- Josh Moyer, ESPN Staff Writer
Linebacker Jonathan Walton took on a part-time job over the summer so he could afford to fly to Penn State for a camp. Now, he's finally looking to take an official visit there.
The unrated 2013 prospect out of Daphne (Ala.) Bayside will arrive in Happy Valley on Dec. 7, a week after he takes his first official visit to Minnesota.
"I just kind of want to get around the campus a little more," Walton said. "I got there in the summer, but there was nobody really up there, so I just want to go up there and see how the school is with people around campus and just see how everybody is."
Walton insisted he didn't have a top school but acknowledged he was "pretty high" on Penn State. His coach, Phil Lazenby, has formed a longstanding relationship with Nittany Lions defensive coordinator Ted Roof, and Walton said he really enjoys chats with the PSU assistant.
Sometimes, they'll talk about football. Other times, they'll chat about academics or the beach. Walton said he has grown fonder of this coaching staff, and he said that's important because -- above all else -- he said he needs to feel comfortable on campus.
The 6-foot-1, 236-pound senior said he's not sure when he might commit somewhere. He could take more official visits in January, or he could commit before Christmas. Walton said when he visits somewhere and it feels right, when it feels comfortable, he'll commit.
"I've been up to Penn State, and I love the place," he said. "I just want to get back up there and get around a little bit more."
The Alabama product boasts seven offers -- including Arkansas State, Louisiana Tech, PSU and Troy -- and said he's hoping to earn one during his official visit with the Golden Gophers. And, despite all the choices, Walton said he wasn't leaning away from Penn State because of the sanctions.
"You can see people are still excited for this program, which is a good program," he said. "I still think their punishment was not completely fair, but the boys that stayed, they're fighting hard. And I wouldn't mind being a part of raising a program. Plus, it's a great education. That's why I'd go there."
4dMitch Sherman and Dan Murphy