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Looking Back At Penn State Football’s Whirlwind Recruiting Weekend

To say that Penn State football had an active weekend on the recruiting trail would be an understatement.

The Nittany Lions gained four commitments, but lost one in their recruiting class of 2020 within the span of just about 24 hours, making it by far the busiest few days so far this cycle.

It all started on Friday night when Lackawanna College defensive back Ji’Ayir Brown committed to James Franklin’s program. The Nittany Lions have clearly found something in the Lackawanna pipeline, as Brown is the second player from the Scranton area junior college to commit to Penn State this cycle following wide receiver Norval Black.

Within the hour, four-star wide receiver Jaden Dottin committed to the program over Michigan, Michigan State, and Pitt, among others. At 6’3″, Dottin will add plenty of size and athleticism to an already deep Penn State wide receiver room. In his junior year at Suffield Academy in Connecticut, Dottin hauled in 29 passes and scored six touchdowns.

The recruiting success continued for Franklin heading into Saturday night. Four-star defensive tackle Fatorma Mulbah committed to the Nittany Lions, strengthening an already gifted defensive side of the ball for Penn State’s class of 2020.

Mulbah, who also had interest from Ohio State, is the fourth Pennsylvania native to join Penn State’s recruiting class of 2020. He’s the No. 6 player in the state and No. 58 defensive tackle in the country, according to

James Franklin’s hot streak came to a close just a few hours later on Saturday night, when four-star linebacker Derek Wingo flipped his commitment from Penn State to Florida. The Fort Lauderdale native originally committed to Happy Valley on Christmas Day, but decided he wanted to be closer to home and play his college ball in Gainesville.

With his decommitment, Wingo became the fourth class of 2020 recruit to flip his commitment away from Penn State. He was one of Franklin’s top recruits in this cycle, and was looked at by many as the future of “Linebacker U” alongside four-star recruit Curtis Jacobs.

Penn State bounced back from the loss by securing its fourth and final commitment of the weekend on Saturday night. Four-star defensive end Coziah Izzard committed to the program over Alabama, Florida, and Georgia, among others.

With his commitment, Izzard became the third defensive lineman to join the Nittany Lions’ recruiting class of 2020. The 6’2″, 271-pound defensive end is the No. 11 player from his home state of Maryland this cycle.

With the dust settled on this wild recruiting weekend, James Franklin now has 12 verbal commitments in his class of 2020.

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About the Author

Will Pegler

Will is a sophomore majoring in journalism and is Onward State's assistant sports editor. He is from Darien, Connecticut and is a lifelong Penn State football fan. He loves a good 80's comedy movie, The Office, and the New York Yankees and Giants. You can catch some of his ridiculous sports takes on his Twitter @gritdude and yell at him on his email [email protected]


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