Thursday, May 16, 2013
2014 PSU spotlight: DB Dravon Henry
By Josh Moyer
Heading into summer, NittanyNation will look closer at the 2014 recruits who claim offers from Penn State. Today we examine four-star DB Dravon Henry, who's No. 127 in the ESPN 150.
Vitals: DB Dravon Henry, Aliquippa (Pa.) High School, 5-foot-11, 181 pounds
Offers: He holds about two dozen right now. For those of you bad at math, that means about 1-in-5 of FBS schools have decided to extend Henry an offer. He's in high demand, and some of his top offers include Florida State, Michigan, Ohio State, Pittsburgh, South Carolina, UCLA, Virginia Tech and West Virginia.
Numbers game: On the offensive side of the ball, Henry was invaluable to his team. He finished the season with 1,919 rushing yards and 31 touchdowns -- on just 197 carries. That means, for every seven rushing attempts, Henry would pile up an average of 68 yards and a touchdown. On defense, he had five interceptions as a junior -- but finished with 11 as a sophomore. (It might be safe to say offenses targeted him a little less this past season.)
ESPN scouting report: "Henry is a versatile, smooth athlete with production as a running back, but might be best suited as a safety. Overall, he is a well-rounded prospect who has many good qualities on both sides of the ball. Will most likely end up on the defensive side of the ball, but his production as a runner will increase his value." -- ESPN scouting report
Memorable highlight: OK, so Henry's mostly being recruited on defense and these are offensive highlights. Still, you'll get a pretty good idea of his balance and athleticism at the 30-second mark in the above video. Henry takes the handoff at his opponent's 37-yard line, somehow breaks out of a gang-tackle after about 3 yards, regains his balance, sprints upfield, spins to break another tackle and caps it all off with a touchdown dive.
State of the position: Defensive back remains a priority for PSU, despite already grabbing two commits in this 2014 class. The Nittany Lions would likely take Henry at any point but, ideally, PSU wants one more player here. The depth this season is already much improved from last season, and this 2014 class should help shore up the secondary throughout the rest of the sanctions.
What has caught Penn State's eye: Is "everything" a valid answer? Henry is high up on PSU's big board because he could play both ways if asked and boasts that versatility that PSU likes so much. He's quick, has the genes, the hip movement and the range to contribute early out of the gate. He's a rare player, and he's probably similar to fellow Pittsburgh product Tyler Boyd in this past recruiting class -- not in style but more in the fact that PSU is not going to let up here. It's recruiting Henry hard, and it'll likely do that until the end.
What are Penn State's chances? Medium. Yes, Henry listed PSU on his top four back in March. But that list isn't concrete, and Henry's father said his son's recruitment has actually gotten harder since then. He's added several big offers -- such as Florida State and UCLA -- and those schools are definitely intriguing. Still, Henry has a lot of family connections and Pitt appears to be the top choice right now. Henry has high interest in PSU, but it's not likely that he ends up there.
Quotables: "I’m just looking for a place that feels like home, that’s pretty much it. I want to be comfortable with my surroundings."