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Star Cornerback Justin King Returns To Penn State In Recruiting Role

Justin King, an electric two-way player for Penn State from 2005-2007, returned to his alma mater this week as an assistant recruiting coordinator.

The 30-year-old Pittsburgh native will join his stepfather, cornerbacks coach Terry Smith, in trying to convince the nation’s top prospects to pick the Nittany Lions, just like they did.

King played for Smith at Gateway High School and would team up with fellow five-star Derrick Williams to form the nucleus of a program-altering 2005 recruiting class. They played major roles on the 2006 Orange Bowl championship team as true freshmen and enjoyed two of the more successful careers in Happy Valley since the turn of the century.

King declared early for the 2008 NFL Draft following a First Team All-Big Ten season at cornerback and was selected No. 101 overall by the St. Louis Rams. He clocked the second-fastest 40-yard dash at that year’s combine in 4.31 seconds — behind only Chris Johnson’s then-record 4.24.  King spent six years in the league, also making stops in Indianapolis and Pittsburgh, before being released in July 2013.

King is the third-highest rated prospect in program history to sign with the Nittany Lions since the advent of recruiting rankings, according to 247Sports. He earned his undergraduate degree in Letters, Arts, and Sciences in just two and a half years, so King knows all about making the most of the student-athlete experience. He’ll be a great addition to Penn State’s recruiting efforts, especially in Western Pennsylvania.

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About the Author

Ethan Kasales

Ethan’s a senior journalism major who grew up in Lemont, a few minutes from campus. When he’s not covering Penn State sports, you can usually find him golfing or teaching snowboarding at Tussey Mountain. Feel free to email him at [email protected]


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