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ESPN Ranks Yetur Gross-Matos No. 39 Player In College Football

ESPN named Penn State football star Yetur Gross-Matos as the No. 39 player in all of college football today, according to its annual preseason rankings of the top 50 college football players.

Writers cited Gross-Matos’ dominant sophomore season in which he totaled eight sacks and 20 tackles-for-loss, the latter of which ranked second in the Big Ten and 12th nationally. He is just the 11th player in Penn State history to reach the 20 tackles-for-loss mark over a single season. Additionally, Gross-Matos earned first team All-Big Ten honors from the media and was named to the third team by the conference’s coaches last season.

“At 6-foot-5 and 264 pounds, Gross-Matos has ideal NFL edge-rusher size after recording eight sacks and two forced fumbles in 2018,” ESPN said.

To determine the rankings, ESPN had its panel of college football writers vote on pairs of players and ask, “Which player will be better in 2019?” Voters considered both the quality and the quantity of each player’s contributions to his team’s ability to win games, including stats and leadership qualities. Once the head-to-head “matchups” were done, writers debated the list in its entirety.

Gross-Matos is the sole Nittany Lion listed in this year’s rankings. He is joined by fellow Big Ten standouts such as Wisconsin running back Jonathan Taylor (No. 7), Ohio State defensive lineman Chase Young (No. 9), and Michigan quarterback Shea Patterson (No. 26).

Now an established star and headed into his junior season, Gross-Matos will likely serve as a veteran leader in the locker room and help lift Penn State’s defensive front seven to even greater heights in 2019.

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About the Author

Matt DiSanto

Matt is a sophomore majoring in journalism and is Onward State's copy editor and interim social media manager. He's a huge Philadelphia sports fan, fantasy football aficionado, and sudoku whiz hailing from Collegeville, Pa. The quickest way to his heart is Margherita pizza. Follow him on Twitter @mattdisanto_ for bad sports takes or email him at [email protected]

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