Welcome to Black Shoe Diaries' coverage of National Signing Day 2016. Our goal is to make sure that you know everything you need to know about every member of Penn State's 2016 recruiting class, including what fans should expect from them, some highlight tape and more. We truly appreciate you taking the time to follow along with our coverage of all things Penn State recruiting-related over the past year, and we can't wait to continue to ramp up our coverage for 2017. So whether you've been reading the site for years, or a first-time reader who just stumbled upon Black Shoe Diaries, we hope you stick around.
To read up on all of the other members of the 2016 recruiting class, simply head back to the main draft board, where recruits will be added as their official letters of intent roll in.
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Penn State really wanted a wide receiver in this class. Despite a wealth of talent at the position and no major need, they pursued Tre Nixon vigilantly. When he ended up at Ole Miss, they focused on a target they could flip from Matt Rhule and the noisy neighbors over in Philly. Enter Dae'Lun Darien, a major athlete with serious potential out wide.
Welcome @ddaelun1710 (and the fresh #PennState cap he's sporting for the announcement) to the Nittany Lion pride! pic.twitter.com/9cXc3PcMDJ— Penn State Football (@PennStateFball) February 3, 2016
|High School||Dunbar (Md.)|
|Positional Rank||#201 WR, #33 in Maryland|
|Commitment Date||February 1st, 2016.|
Okay, I'm gonna say something here but I don't want you to overreact, okay? Ready? Here it goes: Dae'lun Darien reminds me a bit of Allen Robinson when he was a recruit. Don't freak out, I'm not saying he's going to be Allen Robinson, arguably the best receiver in program history. What I'm saying is his skill set and size and storyline all fit in pretty well with ARob's. He is tall (6'4"), has excellent vertical skills and body control, a projected big strong possession receiver, not blazingly fast, and not highly-regarded as a recruit. On his own merits, though, Darien is a damn good pickup. He played as a hybrid pass rusher in addition to playing wide receiver and quarterback in high school, showing superior athleticism. He's already a mismatch for most corners just based on size, and will be a very interesting prospect to watch.
Penn State is loaded at wide receiver, and Darien has some developing to do in his game. As a result, he won't take the field in 2016 barring some sort of insane mass receiver attrition. Down the road, he has a ton of potential.