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Committany Nation (2.19.2016): Predicting the Penn State Class of 2017

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Junior Day is eight days away, so let's throw some darts at the board and see who signs with Penn State a year from now!

Four-star Offensive Tackle Robert Hainsey could be a central piece of PSU's 2017 class
Four-star Offensive Tackle Robert Hainsey could be a central piece of PSU's 2017 class
Ryan Bartow-247Sports

Last year about this time, Nick and I took a shot at predicting the Class of 2016, which of course signed about two and a half weeks ago. First of all, I beg of you, please do not click that link to see how we did. Secondly, if you did click that link, LET ME SEE HOW YOU DID ON YOUR PREDICTIONS TWELVE MONTHS BEFORE SIGNING DAY OK?

Anyway, we are back at it again, trying to give you, faithful reader, an idea of who we see joining the Penn State Class of 2017.

Matt

  1. Sean Clifford-QB
  2. Dylan Rivers-OLB
  3. Yetur Matos-DE
  4. Robert Hainsey-OT
  5. David Adams-ILB
  6. Mark Webb-WR
  7. Avery Roberts-ILB
  8. Nathan Proctor-OLB
  9. Cam Spence-DT
  10. Bo Melton-RB
  11. C.J. Thorpe-OG
  12. Damion Barber-DE
  13. Elijah Conliffe-DE
  14. Damani Neal-S
  15. Kurt Hinish-DT
  16. Jordan McNair-OT
  17. Kasim Hill-QB
  18. Dalyn Wade-Perry
  19. Defensive Back TBD
  20. Defensive Back TBD

A class with this make up doesn't necessarily have the overall star power of the 2016 group, which featured three players with a 5-star ranking from at least one service (Miles Sanders, Michal Menet, Shane Simmons), but the depth of talent would be the best PSU has seen in years. Players like Avery Roberts and David Adams would solidify Linebacker U's future in the middle, while adding even more athleticism to the outside with Dylan Rivers and Nathan Proctor.

On the offensive side, Sean Clifford is a prospect at quarterback I have been excited about since the day he committed. Kasim Hill is no slouch himself, and bringing in two quarterbacks is something this staff has wanted to do sooner or later. Mark Webb at receiver is a fantastic athlete who may not have the film based on a high school offense that does not throw the ball, but has all the tools to be a great one. Finally, a class with Robert Hainsey, C.J. Thorpe, and Jordan McNair would be the third straight with blue chip level talent on the offensive line.

Nick

  1. Sean Clifford-QB
  2. Dylan Rivers-OLB
  3. Josh Kaindoh-DE
  4. Robert Hainsey-OT
  5. Yetur Matos-DE
  6. Mark Webb-WR
  7. Jordan Anthony-OLB
  8. Cam Spence-DT
  9. Kasim Hill-QB
  10. Anthony McFarland/D'Andre Swift-RB
  11. Avery Roberts-ILB
  12. Micah Clark-OT
  13. Damion Barber-DE
  14. Damani Neal-S
  15. Dalyn Wade-Perry-DT
  16. C.J. Thorpe-OG
  17. David Adams-ILB
  18. Kurt Hinish-DT
  19. Defensive Back TBD
  20. Defensive Back TBD

It's really difficult to make class predictions this far in advance. First of all, half of the 2017 kids who will eventually have offers, don't even have their offers yet. Second of all, many of these kids have only even taken one or two visits so far, and haven't even come close to acquiring all of the offers they will eventually acquire. Thus, my prediction right now is a best case scenario situation.

The things we know about this class are that the staff wants two quarterbacks, and needs to load up on defensive tackles and linebackers (particularly inside linebackers). With this class, all of those things are accomplished. Kasim Hill and Sean Clifford fill out the quarterback spots, Cam Spence, Dalyn Wade-Perry and Kurt Hinish fill the defensive tackle roles, and David Adams and Avery Roberts help build back ILB depth.

So once again, this class will not happen. Rather, it represents who Penn State's likely top targets are (with a few exceptions who are even more unrealistic than this group). Some of them will sign, maybe even more than expected if the Nittany Lions put together a strong season on the field, but many of these guys will be replaced by lower-ranked players when all is said and done. But hey, why not drink the Kool-Aid while we can!