The news around the Penn State basketball program keeps getting better and better. Today Louisville standout small forward Jeff Brooks announced he intends to play basketball for Penn State. This kid has a fantastic resume. He was somewhat of a late bloomer, but after doing a summer of camps and all star games he turned a lot of heads. Some people consider him the best player in Kentucky.
Brooks passed on offers from Arkansas, Clemson, Georgia, and Virginia Tech. Kentucky and Louisville showed interest, but wanted Brooks to wait until later in the signing period. I guess Brooks wasn't happy being anyone's second choice.
This is huge for the program for many reasons. Brooks will provide much needed depth behind Claxton at small forward next year. But more importantly, Ed DeChellis has proven he can go into previously forbidden territory and pick up recruits. He plucked Geary Claxton out of Connecticut which is Husky territory. He pulled Jamelle Cornley out of the heart of Buckeye country, Columbus, OH. Talor Battle came out of Albany, NY which has traditionally gone to Syracuse. And now he pulls Brooks out of Wildcat country.
DeChellis' strategy is clear. Go into the back yards of these big time programs and find second tier players that these big programs treat like kids they can fall back on. Tell them you can go to Powerhouse X and ride the bench for a year or two or you can come to Penn State and play right away. So far it is working.
Battle and Brooks will complete the class for this year as Luber and Mooch Jackson are the only players we lose after this season. I can't think of a more exciting time for Penn State basketball.