The Nittany Lions won’t have too many uncommitted recruits to pursue in the week leading up to National Signing Day; James Franklin indicated in his end-of-year press conference that he’d be using the time to keep fringe verbal commits with his recruiting class. However, there is one top prospect who could flip to the Nittany Lions at the final hour.
Strongside defensive end Joshua Paschal (Our Lady of Good Counsel, Maryland) is currently committed to Mark Stoops and his Kentucky Wildcats program, but there’s reason to believe the 6-foot-4, 255 lb defender might not be playing football in Lexington this fall.
Paschal, the No. 10 defensive end in the Class of 2017, took a visit to Penn State this past weekend as Franklin and Co. made one final attempt at bolstering an already talented recruiting class. The Nittany Lions already have two defensive ends committed in the class in four-stars Yetur Matos and Damion Barber. Paschal’s addition would only further strengthen a unit that has the staff excited about what lies ahead.
Though Paschal’s visit might be indicative of a potential change of heart, Rivals.com recruiting analyst Adam Friedman said to the Kentucky Herald-Leader that Paschal’s trip to Happy Valley may be nothing more than an insignificant portion of a highly-recruited prospect’s recruiting process.
Here’s what Friedman had to say about Paschal’s visit after speaking with the recruit’s father:
“Every kid should be able to take all their visits,” Friedman said. “The visits are fun, and it’s important to do your research and make sure you’re looking at all of your options. Josh certainly did that. He knows a lot of people up there, on the coaching staff and the players. He had a good time. His dad really got the lay of the land. He got to sit with the coaching staff a lot and hear what they said. He certainly liked it up there.”
While this may hold true, James Franklin is as skilled a recruiter as anyone, and could’ve provided Paschal a compelling case for why he should reconsider his decision to play at Kentucky. It appeared he left the lights on at Beaver Stadium for already-committed Nittany Lions this weekend, but he surely gave the young defensive end the full package during his visit to Happy Valley.
We’ll have you covered for all the National Signing Day festivities on Feb. 1.