NCF On The Trail: Penn State Nittany Lions

UA jersey tour: Tyler Jordan

November, 21, 2014
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Four-star offensive guard Tyler Jordan was presented with his Under Armour All-America Game jersey Friday morning in a ceremony sponsored by American Family Insurance. The ceremony took place in front of family, friends and teammates at the Bishop Kenny High School cafeteria.

The 10th-ranked guard and the 128th-ranked prospect overall in the ESPN 300 said he felt honored to be selected.

“I’ve been dreaming of this since I was a little kid and honestly I never thought I would be here," Jordan said.

Jordan has been committed to Florida since February but with the Gators coaching position in limbo, Jordan has received attention from a few Big Ten schools.

“I’m still committed and not wavering at all,” Jordan said. “My commitment is really solid but because of the whole coaching situation, I’ll probably take my visits. I’m not sure where yet but I’ve heard from a few that were talking to me even when I was committed. Penn State and Ohio State I talk to some but I haven’t decided where I’ll visit yet.”

The 6-foot-4, 270 pound prospect at Bishop Kenny but is being recruited by Florida and other schools to play on the interior of the line.

Seven questions with Tyler Jordan

Who was the best player you ever saw play in the Under Armour game?

Jordan: I remember watching [Jadeveon] Clowney. He’s a heck of a player — he was really good.

If you could start a team with any other player in your class who would it be?

Jordan: Probably CeCe Jefferson. I’ve played against him every year but I didn’t get a chance to this year because he was injured.

If you could start a team with any player in this class who would it be?

Jordan: Probably my entire team at Kenny. We have a strong bond and we play well together.

What’s your earliest football memory?

Jordan: Probably the first day of tryouts my freshman year. First year, first practice, first day in pads I was laying kids out and putting them on their backs.

If you could take on a professional athlete in their sport, who would it be and why?

Jordan: Mike Tyson. I’d take a punch — why not?

What would you like to improve on before you get to college?

Jordan: Body position and hand position so that I can get on to people and move them around more.

What are you looking forward to most about going to Orlando?

Jordan: Getting to play against the best-of-the best and learning from experienced coaches and former college coaches.

What’s something about yourself that not many people know about?

Jordan: I’m trying to learn how to play guitar right now, which is not going so well for me.

Early Offer: Who will land Soso Jamabo? 

November, 20, 2014
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Soso Jamabo loved visits to UCLA and Notre Dame, but is it too early to count out the Texas schools? Plus, NC State added a key pledge on Wednesday that should give the Wolfpack much-needed help on the offensive line.
A few weeks ago, Adam McLean was asked what it would take to back away from his Penn State pledge, and he said “nothing can change my mind.” Well, something happened and the ESPN 300 prospect is back on the market. Plus, Zach Gentry has been committed to Texas since May, but rumors sprouted Tuesday he was considering taking other official visits.

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ESPN Jr. 300: What to know in the Big Ten 

November, 19, 2014
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The ESPN Jr. 300 has been updated with new rankings, and there are a ton of Big Ten commits and targets on the list. To help break down the movement and implications, here is all you need to know about the top list and the Big Ten conference.


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Weekend recruiting wrap: Big Ten 

November, 18, 2014
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There was plenty of recruiting news once again this weekend so we are here to recap all that happened within the conference. This is the Big Ten weekend recruiting wrap and a small look at what is ahead within the conference.


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Best of the visits: Big Ten

November, 16, 2014
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In one of the coldest games of the season, Ohio State and Minnesota squared off in a back and forth match that ended with a Buckeyes win. The snow and cold might have impacted the play on the field, but it didn’t stop Minnesotans from enjoying the day.

The weather also didn’t keep the prospects from visiting as there were quite a few recruits in attendance.

He wasn’t visiting as a Minnesota target, but Ohio State five-star commit Jashon Cornell decided to attend the game to watch his future team in Ohio State. The Minnesota native didn’t have too far of a drive, but it takes some dedication to sit in that weather.
The Gophers did have some of their own targets on campus, too, including offensive lineman Tyler Moore. There is no confirmation if his mother's name is Mary, but there is confirming that Tyler enjoyed his trip. The Gophers weren't the only team to deal with bad weather as Wisconsin also had snow and frigid temperatures. While it was an excellent game to watch, Florida native Andre Smith made it very apparent he was aware of how cold it was. Offensive line commit David Moorman was also at the game and got the chance to do a little recruiting. Moorman spent some time ESPN 300 offensive lineman Jalen Merrick, who is also from Florida. Penn State wasn't hosting a marquee opponent in Temple, but it didn't stop some of the bigger prospects from coming out to the game. ESPN Jr. 300 wide receiver Brad Hawkins came out for the match and tweeted a picture from his seats. Hawkins is one of the bigger receiver targets along the East Coast, ranked No. 239 in the ESPN Jr. 300, so he will be a focus for the Nittany Lions in the future.

Since the East Coast and surrounding areas are so important to Penn State, it was a huge visit with ESPN Jr. 300 defensive back Eric Burrell out of Maryland. Burrell is ranked No. 80 in the 2016 class and was also on campus with 2017 offensive lineman Jordan McNair.

Maryland ended up losing its game to Michigan State, but once again it was a good game to have recruits on campus for. Some of the prospects in surrounding areas, including ESPN Jr. 300 tight end Naseir Upshur took a visit this weekend. The Terps also had some official visitors, including defensive lineman Wesley Annan.

Because of its location, Maryland has some unique selling poins for recruits, some of which Annan was able to check out for himself. Annan got to check out the Lincoln Memorial since it's so close to campus. There aren't many other schools that can boast that type of experience for recruits.

Weekend recruiting wrap: Big Ten 

November, 11, 2014
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Another week has gone by and plenty of news happened throughout the Big Ten. Here is a look at the most important recruiting news that occurred.

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Star 2016 DT Edwin Alexander backed away from an early pledge to LSU, but expect his next pledge to stick this time around. The battle for ESPN 300 offensive guard Joshua Wariboko will come down to two schools.


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Weekend recruiting wrap: Big Ten 

November, 4, 2014
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The Big Ten had a busy weekend with a few commitments, offers and important visitors. This is the Big Ten weekend recruiting wrap outlining the most important happenings from this past few days.


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GAITHERSBURG, Md. -- When asked why Penn State has done so well recruiting in the Baltimore-Washington, D.C., metro area, longtime commit Adam McLean quickly replied with an answer that perfectly defines the Nittany Lions’ success.

“Washington, D.C., is Nittany Lion territory,” said McLean, the nation’s No. 12 defensive tackle and the top-ranked player in Maryland in the 2015 class.

Indeed it is, even more so since James Franklin arrived in Happy Valley.


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Five-star Torrance Gibson is slated to announce his decision Monday, and there's expectations that it'll be a good day to be a Buckeye. Plus, Florida and Maryland's recruiting efforts could get a real shot in the arm after big victories this weekend over recruiting rivals.

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Best of the visits: Big Ten

November, 2, 2014
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Ohio State, Penn State, Nebraska and Michigan all had a few big recruiting visitors on campus this past weekend. Of course those recruits took to social media to share their experiences and document what happened.

Offensive lineman Branden Bowen is currently committed to Utah, but he made the trip out to see the Buckeyes play Illinois.
As Bowen noted in his tweet, he is from Utah, where it was significantly warmer than Ohio. The weather wasn't terrible in Columbus, but it got pretty cold at the game given that it was at night.

Bowen didn't come very prepared and ended up wearing shorts to the game. If he ends up choosing Ohio State I'm sure he will invest in a pair of long pants for the winter. The Buckeyes also got the chance to entertain one of their newest commitments, linebacker Jerome Baker. The ESPN 300 linebacker flipped from Florida and was excited to take in the game with no stress. Ohio State had another in-state linebacker on campus outside of Baker in Cincinnati native Anthony McKee. McKee doesn't have an offer yet, but depending on how the class plays out he could find himself with an offer down the line.

Maryland coach Randy Edsall was hoping to build a rivalry with conference opponent Penn State and the game this past weekend might have been a nice foundation for that rivalry.

The Terps players refused to shake hands with the Penn State players at the opening coin toss, which caused quite a stir on Twitter among recruits. There were plenty of prospects in attendance to see the incident as well, including ESPN Jr. 300 commit Shane Simmons and ESPN Jr. 300 target Robbie Robinson. The staff was expecting another ESPN Jr. 300 target in E.J. Price, but he tweeted that he was unable to make it to the game.

Wisconsin wasn't at home on Saturday as it took on Rutgers, but that doesn't mean the Badgers' targets weren't watching.

One of the bigger 2016 recruits, ESPN Jr. 300 running back Antonio Williams, has been paying close attention to most of Wisconsin's games this season, including this one. Williams has said the Badgers lead for him as of right now and as the No. 148-ranked prospect in his class, he would be a huge addition.

Michigan also had some prospects on campus, mainly from the 2016 and 2017 class.

Sophomore quarterback Andrew Marty tweeted a picture from the end zone before the game. Two of the bigger targets on campus, ESPN Jr. 300 defensive end Prince Sammons and offensive lineman Michael Jordan, both got to spend some time together as well. Finally, Nebraska was hosting a few official visitors for the 2015 class for its game against Purdue.

Offensive lineman Zach Robertson and receivers A.D. Miller and Tony Brown were the three most prominent.

Miller is an Illinois commit, who initially was trying to keep his visit under wraps, got a first-hand look at the Nebraska fan base. The Huskers beat Purdue and gave the targets a good game to come and see. The atmosphere was exciting and the prospects all enjoyed their time in Lincoln.

Big Ten's top recruiting visits 

October, 31, 2014
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We are moving later and later into the season, which always means there is potential for decommitments, flips and surprise visitors.

You could see all three scenarios happen in the Big Ten this weekend, which could be an important recruiting weekend for a few teams.

Nebraska vs. Purdue:


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About this time of year coaches scour junior college ranks for offensive line talent, and thathas helped Tyler Howell become one of hottest targets around. Plus, is Clemson in danger of losing ESPN 300 commitment Juwuan Briscoe?

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The center of Bill Snyder’s program at Kansas State is local players, and K-State has done a masterful job with the 2015 class in the Sunflower State. Plus, Utah hasn’t grabbed a lot of recruiting headlines so far this season, but one Pac 12 recruiter says it should be.


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