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Recruiting Impact Of Penn State’s Victory
Anyone who’s been following recruiting this year knows that while Penn State has put together a pretty solid class, there were questions from recruits about where this program was headed under James Franklin. Despite the roster limitations that Franklin has faced during his tenure in Happy Valley, back-to-back seven win seasons didn’t inspire a ton of confidence. It was becoming apparent that Franklin needed a strong 2016 season, and a “signature” win of sorts to get back that mojo that he brought to Penn State in January 2014.
It’s safe to say that the Nittany Lions knocking off No. 2 Ohio State counts as Franklin’s signature victory, and that said mojo is back. To put it simply, this was the most important win since at least Ohio State 2005 — and really, this could prove more impactful than even that game.
Just three weeks ago, Penn State was trailing Minnesota 13-3 at halftime, and fans and media alike were calling for Franklin’s job. Fast forward to today with the 24th ranked Nittany Lions now staring at a potential 10-2 record at season’s end, and it’s hard to believe this is even the same program. Franklin will no longer have to answer to his job security. He’ll no longer have to answer to questions about getting a signature win. He’ll no longer have to sell what his vision for this program is — instead, he’ll point to Marcus Allen and Grant Haley’s block-6.
Now, this doesn’t mean that Penn State will begin to recruit at an Alabama or Ohio State level. And I’m not even sure how significant of an impact this win and this season will have on 2017, just because so many of those recruits are already committed to other programs and the Nittany Lions really don’t have a ton of room left in the class. But make no mistake about it, Saturday’s victory will prove to be a major stepping stone to top 10 level classes going forward.
Not surprisingly, recruits were active on twitter following Penn State’s victory.
2017 OG Mike Miranda (Commit)
I love this place— Mike Miranda (@bigmike2178) October 23, 2016
2017 LB Brelin Faison-Walden (Commit)
#WEARE #ohioStateWho ? pic.twitter.com/9dhmCQJeAA— Young Simba (@BrelinFaison) October 23, 2016
Analysis: Faison-Walden has flirted with a number of schools, most notably Michigan. Having him on campus this weekend was obviously huge. We’ll see if he’s now back to being fully committed to the Nittany Lions.
2017 WR Mac Hippenhammer (Commit)
Last night was a movie ...In Happy Valley with my dawgs ⚪️⚪️ pic.twitter.com/upOcELi9Rg— Mac Hippenhammer (@machipp2) October 24, 2016
Analysis: From left-to-right: Brailyn Franklin, Brelin Faison-Walden, Yetur Matos, Mac Hippenhammer, (EDIT: It’s Jaylen Harris), and Cam Sullivan-Brown
That's a huge win— TreOcho® (@Goony_38) October 23, 2016
Analysis: Granted I don’t have proof this is about Penn State, but I am a connect the dots guy, so let’s assume Wade is talking about the Nittany Lions. Anyway, Penn State needed a strong season to help sway Wade, and this win should help. Will be officially visiting Happy Valley for the Iowa game.
WE STORMIN THE FIELD— DJ Brown (@MoneyBrown1_) October 23, 2016
2018 DE Micah Parsons (Commit)
Craziest place on earth #weare ⚪️ https://t.co/m2KcukIsTO— #blessed⭐️MVP™ (@Micah_Parsons90) October 23, 2016
Analysis: Parsons’ father admitted a few weeks ago that he wanted to see Penn State beat one of the big three: Ohio State, Michigan, or Michigan State. Here you go, Mr. Parsons.
I TOLD YOU PENN STATE WAS ON THE COME UP !— 3️⃣ (@TheSlade_Era) October 23, 2016
Analysis: Tom VanHaaren of ESPN believes that Slade was most impacted by the atmosphere/game.
2018 WR Shaquon Anderson-Butts
PSU litt right now— quon (@anderson_quon) October 23, 2016
Great time at Penn State tonight!!! Unbelievable atmosphere and fans! WOW #WEARE pic.twitter.com/xEEG5caj9D— Blaine Scott (@blaine_scott54) October 23, 2016
Ground was shaking at Penn State..⚪️⚪️⚪️ #WeAre @ Beaver Statium , Penn State Game https://t.co/A3iMgxTC3o— Ruck (@Jeremy_Ruckert1) October 23, 2016
The Finesse Kids ⚪️ @Chico__Hendrix #WeAre #FreeKodack pic.twitter.com/f8HLqE9Fg5— Ty. (@T_23_baller) October 23, 2016
Okay Okay then Penn State.— • Aeneas Hawkins • (@King_Hawk92) October 23, 2016
PSU ⚪️ ⚪️ ⚪️ ⚪️ ⚪️— Telly Mac (@KwantelRaines) October 23, 2016