James Franklin wasted little time making a splash at Penn State. During his introductory press conference on Saturday afternoon, the enthusiastic coach let his passion show through as he declared to “Dominate the state and the region in recruiting.” Sure, that made a great quote, but could he really deliver on his promise? Well, you be the judge. Just a few hours after being introduced, Franklin had already landed two new recruits for Penn State.
Franklin came to Penn State already with the reputation of being a strong recruiter after continually bringing top talent to Vanderbilt, a tough place to recruit at due to high academic standards and a history of losing on the football field.
Offensive lineman Chance Sorrell from Middleton, OH had originally committed to Franklin at Vanderbilt. However, he quickly reopened his recruitment after the announcement that Franklin was heading to Happy Valley. It didn’t take long for an offer to come to Sorrell from Penn State, and he accepted right away. The 3-star lineman is an important acquisition for the Nittany Lions, who at the time of his decision, had only two other offensive linemen in the class of 2014.
Sorrell will need time to both bulk up and develop, but could be an important part down the road, as he should be someone who could fill it at several different positions.
Also changing schools less than 24 hours after Franklin was announced at Penn State was 4-star defensive end Lloyd Tubman. The talented lineman had been committed to Vanderbilt for over six months, but like Sorrell, quickly decided to head North with Coach Franklin. At six-foot-five and 235 pounds, Tubman already has a good athletic build that will serve him well from the end position. He’s sure to add weight once he arrives on campus and will make a solid addition to a 2014 class that already includes Thomas Holley, one of the top defensive tackles in the nation.
Following in the footsteps of Sorrell and Tubman, another 3-star offensive lineman decided to jump ship from Vanderbilt to Penn State. Brendan Brosnan, a six-foot-six, 275 pound offensive tackle will add more depth to a position that was once thin in the 2014 class. With Brosnan’s addition, the Nittany Lions now have four offensive linemen who are committed in the class of 2014.
The most recent recruits put Penn State at 22 verbal commitments for 2014. However, five prospects enrolled early and started school this week, meaning those scholarships count on the 2013 total.
With National Signing Day less than a month away, Franklin still has time to continue to flex his recruiting muscle. He has also already offered two talented defensive backs, a position that Penn State really needs to build, who are currently committed to Vanderbilt. Safety Emmanuel Smith and cornerback Amani Oruwaeiye have both reopened their recruiting and are now considering Penn State.
Don’t expect Franklin to slow down anytime soon. Once February 5th passes and the 2014 class is locked up, he will surely begin work on building the next crop of Nittany Lions in the class of 2015. That class will be Franklin’s first full class and a chance to truly show that he can be a dominant recruiter no matter where he goes.
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