It’s not often that a 3-star junior college quarterback can capture the attention of a fanbase. It’s unheard of, literally, among Penn State fans. But that is where we find ourselves this morning, as Iowa Western QB Jake Waters is set to announce his college choice at an 11:30 press conference.
Jake Waters was barely on anyone’s radar entering this season, let alone major BCS level programs like Penn State and Kansas State. It’s funny what a 3,500 yard, 39 TD performance will do for you. Suddenly, Waters found himself fielding calls from Bill O’Brien and Bill Snyder, among others. By the time the calendar flipped to December, Texas and Alabama were linked to the Reveirs’ star signal caller But it was the Nittany Lions and Wildcats that caught Waters’ eye, and it is those two programs that he is deciding between.
Penn State has a limited at best history with junior college players, but as O’Brien and his staff look to do their best to navigate the NCAA mandated scholarship limitations, he is exploring every avenue available, including the JUCO route. Waters appears to be the right guy at the right time. With the mid-season transfer of Paul Jones, the Lions were left razor thin at the quarterback spot going into 2013. The only scholarship player currently on the roster is sophomore to be Steven Bench, with all of 8 passes to his name. All everything QB recruit Christian Hackenberg arrives in Happy Valley in the summer, but “true freshman” and “starting quarterback” are not exactly the typical recipe for success in the college game. Perhaps most concerning would be who would be behind those two; no one.
Jake Waters is not the most important recruit in Penn State history. I’m not even sure where he ranks on that list. But from a purely practical stand point, a verbal commitment from Waters later this morning would be huge for this class, and to some degree, this program. Bill O’Brien and the rest of the staff have been on a roll of late. Waters would be quite the cherry on the sundae.
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