Penn State Football Recruiting: Must-Get Recruits For 2016


Penn State’s 2016 recruiting class is very important to keep in the rebuilding process and add depth to a depleted roster.  Below are five of the best in the country and are definitely Penn State’s Must Get Recruits.

Connor Mcgovern- The 6’4” 300 lb offensive lineman is ranked the number one center in the class of 2016 and a key recruit to anchor the middle of the Lions line for years to come.  Widely regarded as a Penn State Lean, Mcgovern is one recruit that Franklin and Co. cannot let slip through their fingers.  A good visit to North Carolina two weeks ago seemed to shake things up as Mcgovern told Blue White Illustrated, “Right now I’d say that Penn State and North Carolina are tied, they’re both my top schools. The UNC visit went really well.”  The rebuild of the PSU O-Line has focused mostly on offensive tackle with five tackles signed in the last two classes.  Center has seemingly been forgotten as neither Steven Gonzalez, nor Ryan Bates who will play inside can play center.  Mcgovern is a guy who could come in and compete for a starting job day one.

Damar Hamlin- The safety from the WPIAL would be a major slap in the face to Pitt if he were to choose Penn State.  The well documented coaches rivalry between Pitt and Penn State will come to a head with Hamlin who stands 6’1” 190.  Seen as a dynamic play-maker that can play both corner as well as safety draws Adrian Amos comparisons due to his versatility and frame.  Defensive backs coach Terry Smith would welcome another Amos type player in the back-end of the defense.  Hamlin has started to draw attention from big name SEC schools such as LSU and Alabama so he would be a big win for PSU.  Hamlin has stated that he would like to be a leader in his class so do not be surprised to see him commit to a school one way or another rather soon.

Michael Menet- The PA offensive tackle fits all the criteria that the new staff seems to have for their offensive tackles standing at 6’6” 285.  Menet was just given what he described a “huge” offer from Alabama.  Bama has forced its way more and more into Pennsylvania for its top talent ever since landing five-star wide receiver Robert Foster three years ago.  Coach Franklin needs to put a fence around the state and keep the talent home and he should start with Menet.  The highly touted four star can go just about anywhere in the country that he wants.  Paris Palmer seems to have a clear shot to starting left tackle but since he is coming from junior college he will only have two years of eligibility meaning Menet will be a vital replacement for the line.  James Franklin’s “Dominate the State” montra needs to move one step at a time and next step should be Menet.

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Rashan Gary- Rated as the number five player in the country as well as the number one defensive tackle seems to be in a two-horse race between Ohio State and Michigan.  Many people forget however that when Bill O’Brien was still head coach Gary called the Nittany Lions his early favorite.  Granted there was a change in coaching staff but majority of the things that Gary fell in love with can never be taken away from Penn State such as the incredible alumni base, loyal fans, and over 160 majors.  In what would be a true David vs. Goliath story Meyer and Harbaugh should watch out for Franklin and  the mighty Nittany Lions.

Tre Nixon- The speedster out of Florida with legit 4.4 speed would be an amazing coup for Penn State.  Many will bring up that wide receiver is not a position of need in this class due to the past two classes both bringing in three wide receivers.  Nixon’s value is more found in the fact that he is from Florida.  PSU has done a great job of keeping talent from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland, and Virginia but struggled almost everywhere else.  Nixon could open up a pipeline to Florida which consistently churns out some of the top talent in the nation.  Nixon is rated as a four star wide out by almost every recruiting ranking source and can really take the top off of a defense.  Nixon is the definition of a must get recruit.

Overview- As many of you may have noticed there are three central themes to the 2016 recruiting class and those are hitting rivals where it hurts, keeping in state talent home, and location.  Being able to phase Pitt out of their “stomping ground” of the WPIAL would almost completely decimate them as a program, and undoubtedly give Penn State sole possession of being the best state school.  Keeping Menet from the clutches of Bama would be a huge step in really keeping all in state talent home.  Bama has had a larger and larger presence in the region, shown last year by snatching Minkah Fitzpatrick.  Finally, and maybe the most important of the three themes, is Penn State getting its foot in the door with Florida recruits.  By nabbing a big-time Florida recruit it would force people to start paying attention.

Penn State is well on its way to once again becoming a team that is nationally feared and by landing these five recruits they would be one step closer.