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Friday, May 17, 2013
5 Questions: 4-star QB J.J. Cosentino

By Josh Moyer

Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is J.J. Cosentino, a four-star quarterback out of Pittsburgh (Pa.) Central Catholic. Cosentino committed to Florida State but recently received an offer from Penn State and has been recruited by the in-state program since his freshman season.

NittanyNation: Penn State's offer came when you already had committed to Florida State, so what was your reaction with that offer? Did it change anything?

J.J. Cosentino: I was pretty excited, just because they're kind of the hometown team, except for Pitt. I've been up there a couple times before, and they've been recruiting me since like ninth grade, so it's been a long road. Obviously, I still like Florida State a lot -- but it's a good offer to have in case something happens, because crazy stuff happens in college football. You never know with coaches.

I don't think it changes anything, but I'm excited to get it.

NN: So is it fair to say that PSU's kind of the fall-back now?

Cosentino: Yeah. Before everything happened at Penn State, they were at the top of my list -- like in my top-three schools. I went to the Ohio State game last year, and that was just a crazy game. It was a 'White Out' and you couldn't beat that atmosphere. I like it there, but I still like Florida State a little more.

NN: What is it you like about the Seminoles? What makes them a little better than PSU, in your opinion?

Cosentino: I just like everything about them. Coach [Jimbo] Fisher just put another QB in the draft, and I love all the coaches. I'm close to a lot of them. Two of them came up to my school and came to see me, and everything they have down there is great. All the facilities are great, and they're a team on the rise. They're really starting to build a great program.

NN: Since it sounds like you're pretty solid to FSU, let me ask you one more question about PSU since you seem like an unbiased guy. As a Pennsylvania recruit, what kind of future do you foresee for Penn State?

Cosentino: Hmmm ... that's kind of hard to tell for me. Coach [Bill] O'Brien's done a great job with what he's had. And even though some guys left, he did a good job. Somehow, he's still getting some of the top recruits -- so he's putting out a good program.

I think it's hard for him to have the lack of scholarships and stuff. If he wouldn't have that, I would say he would have them as a top-10 team next year or the year after. But it's just hard without those [scholarships]. If he can survive that, I think they'll be really good. I think it might be a tough road for now, but you never know -- especially with the good coaching they have up there.

NN: You have an interesting story to how you really got noticed this season. You didn't put up big stats -- 552 yards, 3 TDs -- and didn't start until Week 3, but you got noticed. What have coaches seen, and how do you think they've looked beyond that?

Cosentino: It is an interesting story. I wasn't at Central all four years, I actually started at Kiski Area as a freshman and a sophomore. Then I transferred to Central and, for whatever reason, the coaches didn't start me until the third game, and I lit it up. I just kind of hung around. I wasn't bad-mouthing the coaches or anything; I just did what they told me to do, and they finally let me start. They never looked back.

We're not really a passing team. They were always the team to ram it down your throat, so I haven't had the luxury of all the other guys who pass 30 or 40 times to spread it out. I'm lucky if I get to pass 10 or 12 times, but I did with that what I could and tried to make the best out of it.

And the passes I did make are on my highlight tape -- and they saw that. They saw I could make all the throws, and I would say 20-30 coaches came to my school to see me throw. And they said, 'Even if you didn't throw in the games, we saw you throw here.' I was just doing everything I could, short- to long-distance routes. I tried to show everything.