Coaches are camped out in the parking lot trying to land Penn State players. Two Connecticut-based players, running back Silas Redd and linebacker Khairi Fortt seem to be the primary departure risks. Here is a look at Penn State’s freshmen with four years of eligibility left and 2013 recruits. They are some of Penn State’s most attractive players and players most essential to keep on board for the lean years.
Freshmen [Four Years Eligibility]
The 2012 class was weak, ripped apart by Urban Meyer and the Sandusky scandal, though some strong recruits from 2011 spent last year redshirting and have four years of eligibility remaining.
Angelo Mangiro [G - New Jersey] Mangiro was PSU’s top offensive recruit in 2011. Most services had him rated one of the top guards in the country. He redshirted last year and had been expected to step in and start this year at guard. His runner-up was Rutgers. Tweeted he plans to stay.
Anthony Zettel [DE - Michigan] He was Penn State’s top defensive recruit in 2011, and redshirted last season. Surprise recruit as most expected him to become a Wolverine. Zettel has not commented publicly though his high school coach claims he will stay.
Deion Barnes [DE - Pennsylvania] Barnes is a weakside defensive end, Rivals’ No. 6 DE in 2011. Redshirted last year. His only other official visit was to Georgia.
Donovan Smith [T - Maryland] One of the top offensive line recruits in 2011. Redshirted last year. Expected to start at left tackle. He was among the Penn State players who publicly vowed to stay.
Ryan Nowicki [T - Arizona] Three-star recruit in Class of 2011 who redshirted. Reports have him transferring, likely to Illinois. Washington was also under consideration.
Eugene Lewis [WR - Pennsylvania] He’s a 6’2″ wide receiver. He was Rivals’ No. 141 overall recruit for 2012. He was among the players who reaffirmed their commitments.
Jamil Pollard [DT - New Jersey] He’s 6’5″ 280-pounds. He was Rivals’ No. 20 ranked DT in the Class of 2012. He declined comment and has yet to reaffirm his commitment. Boston College was the other school heavily recruiting him.
Brian Gaia [OL - Maryland] He’s 6’5″ 285-pounds. He’s only a three-star recruit, but he’s a three-star Nick Saban inquired about on Monday.
Bill O’Brien had a strong class coming in for 2013. Those players may be the hardest to keep. Players have maintained their commitments now. February is a long way away. He already lost DT Greg Webb to North Carolina (Rivals’ No. 106 overall) and (Rivals No. 222 overall) CB Ross Douglas to Michigan.
Adam Breneman [TE - Pennsylvania] He’s a 6’5″ 228-pound tight end. Four-stars by three of the four recruiting services. Five from Scout. He’s Rivals’ No. 27 overall. Has already reaffirmed his commitment.
Dorian Johnson [OT - Pennsylvania] He’s a 6’6″ 280-pound offensive tackle, rated four-stars by three of the four recruiting services. 247 has him as a five-star and the No. 13 overall. He had offers from Alabama and Wisconsin. Consensus has him flipping to Pitt or West Virginia if he decommits.
Garrett Sickels [DE - New Jersey] He’s a 6’4″ 245-pound defensive end, rated four-stars by every recruiting service. Rivals has him No. 60 overall. He should be staying.
[Photos via Presswire, Getty]