Penn State Football Recruiting
The biggest storyline in Penn State football recruiting is that of the three running backs on the team, Tomarrion Parker and Cooper Cousins. They are both wide open and Sean Spencer would love to have them both on his roster. But the question is how high are they ranked? Let’s take a look at what these players have in common and how good they are as football players. The top two running backs, Cooper Cousins and Sterling Jenkins, are also available to Penn State.
Tomarrion Parker, a four-star defensive lineman from Phenix City, Alabama, has verbally committed to Penn State. His commitment is considered a nice win for Franklin’s program as other SEC schools have remained in the pursuit of the Phenix City, Alabama native. The announcement also signals the beginning of the process for another defensive lineman, J’ven Williams. With Parker’s pledge, Penn State has three more players in its 2023 recruiting class that are rated in the top 100 in the nation by 247Sports’ composite rankings.
The Nittany Lions are atop the list of schools interested in Cousins. A four-star interior offensive lineman, Cousins is Penn State’s first verbal commit for the 2024 class. Penn State’s Ja’Juan Seider understands that a running back cannot run the ball without good linemen. Cousins’ commitment signals a new era for Penn State’s recruiting efforts.
At 6-foot-8 and 308 pounds, Sterling Jenkins is one of the top offensive linemen in the 2015 recruiting class at Penn State. He played sparingly in high school, but quickly became one of the best scout team members. The 6-foot-8, 330-pound Jenkins was a four-star recruit in 2015 according to 247Sports. He also ranked fifth in Pennsylvania. Jenkins held offers from some of the country’s top programs, including Ohio State and Alabama. However, he’s a large athlete and carries 330 pounds, so he has a difficult time getting on the field.
Donovan Smith has been a popular name in college football circles this past season. He was a standout offensive lineman for the Nittany Lions from 2012 to 2014 and went undrafted before signing with the New York Jets in 2014. In fact, Smith was the most highly recruited player in the class of 2015, earning scholarship offers from USC, Ohio State, Notre Dame, and more.
Allar, the high school quarterback that Penn State is looking for, could start the first three games of the season and has the size to compete with Hackenberg. He’s a 5-star prospect and could start the fall games, too. If Allar is pressed into duty early, he could regress. In the meantime, his emergence as a prospect has spurred the Penn State staff to pursue him.