Bill O'Brien and crew prove they've got some tricks up their sleeve, as they've added a late member to Penn State's 2012 recruiting class.
Brennan Franklin, Ladies and Gentlemen!
Home/HS: Peoria, AZ/Centennial
Starz 'n Sheetz
Stars: Rivals- NR Scout-NR
Offer sheet: No BCS offers, but interest from Colorado, Washington, Oregon State, and Toledo. Had been headed to Eastern Arizona Junior College.
BREAKING: Centennial 2012 LB Brennan Franklin commits to Penn State. "It's still Linebacker U. Every linebacker wants to go there," he said.— Richard Obert (@azc_obert) July 27, 2012
Penn State will be in a heavy scholarship crunch for the next four seasons, so BOB and crew prepared for the future the only way they could--by adding one more player to this year's incoming class. Brennan Franklin had been passed over by FBS programs during this past cycle, but apparently jumped at the opportunity to play at the Big Ten level. It doesn't seem that he was on Penn State's radar until very recently, but it seems that the coaches did their due diligence.
Before LB Brennan Franklin committed to Penn State, Nittany Lions asst Ted Roof asked him if he'd ever been in a fight. pennstate.247sports.com/Article/Brenna…— Steve Wiltfong (@SWiltfong247) July 27, 2012
It appears that Arizona, as well as Arizona State and Arkansas, was courting Franklin as a preferred walk-on earlier this spring, but he chose to wait and see if a scholarship would open up. A few months later one did, but a couple thousand miles east. A first-team All-State linebacker in his senior season, Franklin racked up over 100 tackles in each his junior and senior seasons.
Given that Penn State's next 4 incoming classes will be capped at 15, it only makes sense to try and expand on the 19 who made official their commitments on in February, especially considering the uncertainty swirling around many of their statuses with Penn State. Franklin might be an under-the-radar guy, but there's something to be said for someone who was passed over time and time again. There's going to be an edge to this kid that matches the attitude of the team he's just joined. And it's a testament to his character that he would sign on to Penn State now, at the nadir, knowing what the next four years have in store. But this is the definition of "nothing to lose," both for Franklin and for Penn State, and sometimes, that's makes for a perfect match.
Welcome to Penn State, Brennan!
UPDATE: AZ Central has a story on the commitment, with quotes from Brennan himself. Go read it.
"I know there’s a mess out there, but it’s one of the best schools to go to," said Franklin, who was a week away from packing his bags for Eastern Arizona College. "If I went to New Mexico or New Mexico State or Indiana, they wouldn’t be going to a bowl game anyway.