- Tom VanHaaren, ESPN Staff Writer
It was supposed to be a normal week for 2014 quarterback John Wolford (Jacksonville, Fla./Bishop Kenny), who has been committed to East Carolina since September. He thought his recruitment was over and he would just prepare for the next stage in his career.
That all changed, though, with a phone call from the Penn State coaches on Wednesday.
“I hadn’t been talking to them at all, it all just happened last week,” he said. “They saw my film and I talked to Coach [Bill] O’Brien and Coach [Tony] Midget. He came down on Wednesday and then I talked to O’Brien that night and he offered me.”
Wolford said the offer came so fast that he really hasn’t had time to process what it all means for his recruitment. He is still committed to East Carolina, but hasn’t had a chance to sit down and talk with his parents about the new team in the mix.
The reason the offer came so suddenly, Wolford said, was because now former Penn State quarterback Tyler Ferguson decided to transfer. Freshman Christian Hackenberg had won the position battle, leaving Ferguson as a backup.
Penn State already has Michael O’Connor (Bradenton, Fla./IMG Academy) committed in the 2014 class, but O’Brien told Wolford he would like to add another quarterback to the roster. That might be something that factors in to a decision, if he will consider the Nittany Lions, or not.
“It’s exciting. With Hackenberg and Penn State, anywhere you go there’s going to be competition,” Wolford said. “I’m not going to go into any situation thinking that person has the job, because that won’t make me better.”
At 6-foot, 193 pounds, Wolford lacks the typical size of a big pocket-passer, but he has a lot of the fundamentals and technique down which would help him succeed in college. O’Brien has been known for his work with quarterbacks, most famously with Tom Brady and the New England Patriots.
That offer isn’t the only one Wolford needs to consider, though. He held an offer from Wake Forest, but the recently hired staff extended the offer again after watching his film.
“That one came fast, too,” he said. “The new staff just got in and they watched my film and re-extended my offer. It’s just another opportunity I didn’t have before.”
Wolford isn’t sure what he will do just yet. The chance to play at two big-time programs is something that has piqued his interest, but he isn’t willing to make any final decisions until he talks to his parents and the East Carolina coaches.
545dTom Luginbill and Craig Haubert