Wednesday, June 19, 2013
Ollison grabs PSU offer before top-5 list
By Josh Moyer
Three-star tailback Qadree Ollison (Buffalo, N.Y./Canisius) is set to announce his top five Monday, so a Penn State offer last night came at just the right time.
"I wasn't really expecting it. I haven't talked to them in a couple weeks, so it was surprising," said Ollison, who holds 15 offers. "It came just in time."
The 6-foot-1, 205-pound tailback last visited Happy Valley for the Blue-White Game. The staff commended his unique combination of speed and power but they told him they couldn't make a commitment to him then because PSU already had two other tailback pledges.
They still do -- with three-star RBs Mark Allen and Nick Scott -- but Allen is coming off a torn ACL and Scott can also play safety. Ollison said he wasn't sure how PSU could offer now, but he was as pleased as he was surprised.
And he hasn't yet eliminated the Nittany Lions from his list.
"It's possible," he said, when asked whether PSU would make his top five. "I had a really great visit down there. I got to see the stadium and all the fans and stuff. It's a great place with a lot of tradition. They run a pro-style offense, and they have a top-of-the-line everything. And they have a stadium that holds something like 110,000 people.
"Even though that thing happened, the fans still support them. The whole state of Pennsylvania is still behind them."
Ollison plans to commit somewhere before Sept. 6, when his Canisius team opens the season in defense of last year's perfect record. And wherever Ollison winds up -- and whatever schools appear on that top five -- will likely have three elements in common: lots of playing time, close coach relationships and a pro-style offense. The tailback said he's basing his top five a lot on that.
He chatted with PSU receivers coach Stan Hixon for about 10 minutes after a Tuesday evening workout, and he received the PSU offer shortly after grabbing another one from Temple. He holds other offers from Boston College, Buffalo, Cincinnati, UConn, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Minnesota, Nevada, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Syracuse and Wisconsin.
His upcoming top five won't be listed in any kind of order, and he said he'll have to do some thinking about the Lions.
"They seem like good people," Ollison said. "And playing in the Big Ten, you want a bigger running back."