Height/Weight: 6-foot-2, 180 pounds
Hometown/High School: Severn, Maryland (Archbishop Spalding High School)
Ranking: ★★★★ (0.8990 247Sports Composite)
Notable Offers: Indiana, Maryland, Michigan State, Minnesota, Notre Dame, Wisconsin
Zakee “Zigga” Wheatley has long been viewed as a Penn State lean. He was offered by the Nittany Lions last June, and went on to become a regular visitor to campus. He was in Happy Valley for the Lasch Bash BBQ last July, the victory over Pitt in September, the White Out victory over Michigan in October, and then for a junior day in early December.
Coming out of that December visit, there was some scuttle that Wheatley may have been close to committing to the Nittany Lions. Since then, Wheatley picked up more offers and visited other schools. Yet, the Nittany Lions remained at the top of his list.
While he is listed as an athlete, Wheatley will almost certainly end up in the defensive backfield for the Nittany Lions. So, the commitment of Jaylen Reed on Thursday and Kalen King earlier in the day on Friday may have played a role in Wheatley deciding to pull the trigger when he did.
Wheately could play wide receiver, cornerback, or safety at the collegiate level. With the Nittany Lions, he projects as a safety when he arrives on campus.
Wheatley’s frame is what you would look for in a safety. He flips his hips well when getting back in coverage, and has a good backpedal. He breaks on the ball well and does not shy away from contact when making a tackle. Possesses good ball skills and does a great job of covering ground in the open field.
With his background as a receiver, Wheatley can also do damage with the ball in his hands. On his Hudl tape, he is not afraid to test the middle of the field as a receiver which is the sign of a fearless player. He could also work as a return man for the Nittany Lions.