|Madam Speaker, I give you the President of the United Nitts!|
Thank you Madam Speaker, members of the Congress, and distinguished guests. My fellow Nittany Lions, the state of our recruiting is good.
When we last met in these chambers, we discussed several issues pertaining to our great nation. Since that time much has transpired. Some of it has been good. We discussed that we have completely met our quota for linebackers.
With Mike Yanchich, Mike Zordich, and Mike Mauti joining our great nation we are set at linebacker through 2011.
We have Matt Stankeiwitch, a fantastic prospect at center to fill the shoes of A.Q. Shipley in a few years.
(Somewhat less thunderous applause)
As many of you know, running back is a major need. Running backs have been the heart and soul of every great Penn State offense since our fathers and grandfathers fought in the Great War. Yet our nation has fallen on troubled times. Austin Scott and Rodney Kinlaw graduate in 2007.
(Polite applause of appreciation)
We failed to recruit a running back in the 2007 class.
(A few grumbles and whistles from the back of the chamber.)
Our nation was dealt a blow last night when running back Sam McGuffie committed to Michigan. We can expect to see him flipping over people for the next four years while he plays for one third of the Axis of Evil.
But last night was not a total loss. We received a verbal commitment from Brandon Beachum, the #4 running back in the nation, to come play football in Happy Valley.
Thank you, please...
Thank you. But there is still much work to be done if we are to win this War on Sweatervests. We must pull more talent out of Ohio. Indications are good that we will soon have a commitment from running back Michael Shaw. That is why I am calling on Jay Paterno to pressure Shaw to have a signed letter of intent on Joe Paterno's desk by February.
Further, I encourage the Congress to reach a compromise in signing either Dontavius Jackson or Dyrell Roberts. Both of them think very highly of Penn State.
My fellow Penn Staters, the War on Sweatervests is not going well on some fronts. We need one or two wide receivers in this class. We have yet to sign one, and last week we lost one of our targets when D.J. Woods committed to Nebraska. Brice Butler, Vaughn Carraway, and Cordale Scott are looking like real longshots. But we cannot give up hope. Penn State is sitting well with Deion Walker and A.J. Alexander. We cannot give up. The War on Sweatervests cannot be won in a week. I ask the citizens of Nittany Nation to be patient. It may be October until we see real progress with wide receivers.
(Grumbling in the back of the chamber.)
There is also much work to be done on the offensive line. Unfortunately four of the nine targets we have been pursuing have committed elsewhere. Tyler Sands was a kid we were looking to fall back on, but he committed to Illinois last week.
Ideally we need to sign two offensive tackles, and Kenneth Page is still looking like a longshot at this point. Reportedly we are still in the running for Vinston Painter, James Bennett, Daulton Freeman, and Deon'tae Pannell. Neal Deiters shocked Nittany Nation last week when he named Northwestern and Penn State as his final two, but he has yet to receive an offer from the coaches.
(Half the room stands and applauds while the other half sits quietly.)
Pickings on the defensive line look slim. Garrett Goebel has committed to Ohio State. But Reggie Ellis, Jewhan Edwards, and Jack Crawford have narrowed their lists and Penn State is still in play.
And last week Penn State extended an offer to Pete Massaro of Newtown Square, PA, a three star defensive end who instantly named the Nittany Lions as his leader.
Our position at defensive back is uncertain. Ideally we need one cornerback and one safety. Cornerback Jared Holley thinks highly of Penn State but is still considered wide open right now. Cornerback Robby Green from Louisiana seems like a longshot. We are also looking at a few athletes that could play corner, but right now it's too difficult to see where we stand with Michael Thomas, Marcus Davis, and Rotell Jenkins. Lamaar Thomas recently named his top six schools and Penn State did not make the cut.
However, cornerback is not a huge need considering the youth and depth on the current roster. With the limited number of scholarships available we could skip signing a corner and be ok. Truly a testament to recruiting in recent years.
At safety we are rumored to be in fantastic shape with D'Anton Lynn of Texas. Lynn's father has a relationship with Penn State coach Brian Norwood from their college football playing days. Lynn has said of all the coaches recruiting him, Norwood is his favorite. And given that his dad is on the Cleveland Browns coaching staff which is close to State College, the possibility of luring him from Texas is not that remote leading many to believe he will eventually be wearing the Blue and White.
And if things should fail with Lynn, not all hope is lost in the War on Sweatervests. Will Hill recently trimmed his list to nine schools and our Dear Ol' State made the cut. And Okechuckwu Okoroha has spoken very favorably of Penn State ever since visiting the campus for the Nike Combine. Indeed, recruiting at safety is looking well.
My fellow Nitts, the War on Sweatervests will try our souls. But we must never give up hope. When the coaching staff was slow to hand out offers in April, many doubted them. With a limited number of scholarships, we must be careful in who we offer. The coaches were being selective and focused on just the top talent in the nation. We now have five good verbal commitments and several more in the works. When it is all said and done I predict we will have filled the major needs on the roster with an excellent group of players.
Yesterday I submitted an updated version of the recruiting board for your review. As we move forward in this great War on Sweatervests, I ask you to be patient and hope for the best. Thank you. May God bless you, and may God bless the United Nitts of America.