Penn State Football Recruiting: Lasch Bash Weekend Preview

Apr 16, 2016; University Park, PA, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions head coach James Franklin walks the field before the Blue White spring game at Beaver Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew O
Apr 16, 2016; University Park, PA, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions head coach James Franklin walks the field before the Blue White spring game at Beaver Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew O /

This weekend the Penn State Football coaching staff will host their yearly Lasch Bash BBQ recruiting weekend. Here is a quick preview of the weekend.

The Lasch Bash BBQ recruiting event is one of the biggest, most important recruiting weekends of the year for Penn State Football. Ever since James Franklin took over as the head coach of the program in January of 2014, this yearly event has been held in July and has produced great results for the Nittany Lions. Between commitments earned at previous Lasch Bashes, or the groundwork being laid for future commitments, the Lasch Bash has been beneficial to Penn State in recent years.

This weekend, the Penn State Football coaching staff will be looking to get positive results from the Lasch Bash once again. The Nittany Lions will have over 100 recruits spanning four different recruiting classes on campus. So it goes without saying that this is a very important weekend for Penn State recruiting.

While the most exciting portion of visitors to campus this weekend will be the un-committed prospects that Penn State is recruiting hard, current commits will be on campus as well. Class of 2017 commits CJ Thorpe, Damion BarberMichael Miranda, and Sean Clifford will all be among those on campus. As will class of 2018 commits Chris Bleich and Micah Parsons.

On top of the Lasch Bash this weekend, the Nittany Lions will also be hosting their “Whiteout Camp” on Friday night. This camp is held every year the same weekend of the Lasch Bash, however there is a twist this season. The twist is that the camp will be held under the lights at Beaver Stadium on Friday night.

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This is very similar to the “Friday Night Lights” camp that Ohio State does under the lights at The Horseshoe every summer. This camp is open to the public and fans are permitted, and encouraged, to attend. Holding this camp under the lights should help to create an electric atmosphere that can only do good things for the Penn State Football program on the recruiting trail.

Not everyone that will attend the Lasch Bash on Saturday will be camping on Friday night. Penn State commits CJ Thorpe and Michael Miranda will be among those camping on Friday night. As will class of 2018 linebackers Charlie Katshir and Dillon Harris. Neither Katshir nor Harris hold a Penn State offer, but I could see this changing at some point in the not so distant future with strong showings this weekend.

It is possible that other players camping on Friday night could receive offers as well. It is through camps like these that the Penn State coaching staff discovered players such as class of 2017 quarterback commit Sean Clifford. So, it is very possible James Franklin and company discover someone again on Friday night.

On top of the committed prospects that will be on campus this weekend, the Nittany Lions will also host a boat load of un-committed targets. Many of the regular names such as Brailyn Franklin, Cameron Sullivan-Brown, Danny Davis, Derrek Pitts, Donovan Johnson, and Lamont Wade. With the exception of Pitts, these are all players I believe Penn State currently leads for. And I would not be surprised to see the Nittany Lions take the lead for Pitts after the weekend.

These are far from the only prospects that the program will host this weekend, just some of the more notable ones.

It is also possible that four-star linebacker Jordan Anthony could pop up on campus this weekend. That would be a huge visit for Coach Franklin and company to get, because Anthony leaves to return to IMG Academy for the fall this upcoming week, so the Nittany Lions would be his last visit before doing so. This could give them some momentum in Anthony’s recruitment, which appears to be a Clemson, Maryland, Michigan, and Penn State battle.

Penn State will also host a lot of top 2018 targets for the Lasch Bash. For a good breakdown, check out Sean Fitz over at Lions247. This content is paid premium content however, and therefore I will not share the entire list on here. The names I have mentioned are names of players whose visits have been discussed either on social media or other free outlets.

While I am not predicting any commitments this weekend, picking up a commitment or two would not surprise me either. Brailyn Franklin is a player I could certainly see pulling the trigger while on campus this weekend, and it would not shock me if Cameron Sullivan-Brown would either. Hopefully, the Nittany Lions can earn a commitment or two this weekend to get recruiting momentum trending up once again.

Penn State is stuck in a bit of a recruiting rut right now. Hopefully, the Lasch Bash will help to turn that around. The Nittany Lion coaching staff, as well as the committed players that will be on campus, will work their butts off to gain a commitment or two and I will not be surprised at all if that were to happen.

Next: Penn State Football 2016 Preview: WR DaeSean Hamilton

Even if the Nittany Lions do not earn any commitments this weekend, they should lay the groundwork for future commitments. A lot of recruits that Penn State is pursuing are in the same boat, they want to see a better product on the field this fall. If the Nittany Lions put a better product on the field this fall, which I expect them to do, then they should finish with a fourth consecutive top 20 recruiting class.