PSU cherry-picking the Big Apple
New York and neighboring New Jersey have a reputation for producing tough, blue-collar football players, and 2010 is no different. The two states have plenty of athleticism to offer this year, but finesse and fluidity are often replaced with well-rounded, physical play -- particularly among the top prospects.
ESPNU 150 No. 5 defensive end Dominique Easley (Staten Island, N.Y./Curtis) is the top player in this region, but he can be a bit rigid in his lateral movements. However, there are few offensive linemen in this class who can go toe-to-toe in the trenches with this explosive future Nittany Lion.
Wide receiver Shakim Phillips (Wayne, N.J./De Paul Catholic) is a large target without great elusiveness or smooth movement skills as a route-runner. But this four-star Boston College commit knows how to use his great frame as a pass-catcher and an imposing outside threat.
Tight end Kevin Haplea (Annandale, N.J./North Hunterdon), the area's No. 3-rated prospect, has solid size and blocking and receiving skills, but the Penn State commit is more reliable as a short or intermediate target than as a game-breaker.
Once again, the Garden State is on a different level when it comes to producing upper-tier prospects. New Jersey, particularly the southern region, seems to put more emphasis on the sport in general. New York claims just two prospects listed in the combined top 10, but Easley certainly represents the Big Apple.
For a look at the top player in the New York/New Jersey area, a name to remember who might not be the highest-rated prospect and the programs doing the best job of recruiting this year, become an ESPN Insider.
States Of Recruiting
States Of Recruiting Index
• Alabama: Loaded with defenders
• Arkansas: Dyer the big prize
• Arizona/New Mexico: Carrington shines
• California offense: James, Bray lead the way
• California defense: Look out for Powell, Uko
• Colorado: Top talent heading out of state
• Florida offense: Dunkley leads deep WR group
• Florida defense: Plenty of premier prospects
• Georgia: Plenty of prospects to choose from
• Hawaii/Alaska: Fehoko is the island king
• Iowa: Derby gaining national attention
• Illinois: Prater leads Prairie State prospects
• Indiana: OSU-bound back Smith leads the way
• Kansas: QB Bell is among the elite
• Kentucky: Football takes a backseat to hoops
• Louisiana: Top talent staying close to home
• Maryland/D.C.: WR Coxson leading the way
• Michigan: Gholston, Baker lead the way
• Minnesota: Highlighted by No. 1 OT Henderson
• Mississippi: Don't miss out on Dickson or Eulls
• Missouri: Demien, Lucas leading the way
• New England: Top talent leaving the area
(Conn., Del., Mass., Maine, Vt., N.H., R.I.)
• North Carolina: Wolfpack taking charge
• Nevada: USC hits jackpot by landing Grimble
• N.Y./N.J.: Penn State cherry-picking Big Apple
• South Carolina: America's emerging hotbed
• Pacific Northwest: Trend of edge rushers
(Oregon, Idaho, Montana, N.D., S.D., Wyoming)
• Tennessee: WR Malone continues tradition
• Texas offense: WR White among top threats
• Texas defense: No. 1 Jeffcoat leads the way
• Pennsylvania: Royer, JoePa leading the way
• Ohio: Buckeyes dominance continues
• Oklahoma: Don't sleep on the Sooner State
• Nebraska: Rodriguez is lone ESPNU 150 player
• Utah: Quickly becoming a must-stop
• Virginia/West Virginia: Rich on skill talent
• Washington: Heap of talent on both sides
• Wisconsin: Recruiters getting a kick out of it