The former four-star prospect in the 2017 recruiting cycle originally committed to the Nittany Lions over Clemson back in February of 2016. After a fantastic career at Chancellor High School in Fredericksburg, Virginia which included setting the school sack record in 2016, came to Penn State with high expectations around him.
Gross-Matos was already quite the physical specimen as a true freshman at Penn State, entering his freshman season as 6-foot-5 and in the area of 240-pounds. “YGM” as he is simply known by Penn State fans was an immediate impact player with the Nittany Lions, playing in 13 games as a true freshman in 2017. Despite not putting up eye popping stats as a freshman, there were glimpses of how special he could be.
It wasn’t till 2018, however, that it became evident just how special he truly was. As a sophomore, Gross-Matos was by far the Nittany Lions best defensive lineman, racking up 54 tackles that included 20 tackles for a loss and eight sacks. He also recorded two forced fumbles and fumble recoveries in his 13 games that season.
As a junior, Gross-Matos saw a bit of a dip in his stats but most of that can be contributed to being a focus of opposing offensive lines while also missing a game for the first time in his career, against the Nittany Lions regular season finale against Rutgers as well as a suspension that left him out of the first half of the season opener against Idaho. Either way, Gross-Matos posted 40 tackles and 15 tackles for a loss, but did record a career high 9.5 sacks.
What You’re Getting
Yetur Gross-Matos checks all the boxes that opposing teams look for in a defensive lineman of the future. He is physically impressive, he has tremendous athleticism, and a strong skillset.
I think it’s also important to note that Gross-Matos is mentally tough. By now, most, if not all Penn State fans know his story. It’s a tragic one and one that really breaks your heart to hear him talk about. If you haven’t heard about it, listen to it here.
There are a few areas that he needs to work on but those can all be easily fixed with more coaching at the next level. NFL.com describes Gross-Matos as a prospect who is a “Boom or bust prospect” and they may so in terms of being a star, it’s not a given that he’ll develop into one of the league’s best defensive lineman. However, I would be willing to bet on him at the least to have a lengthy and productive NFL career.
Overall, Gross-Matos is a defensive end who has the potential to become a dominant and physical force on NFL defensive line for years to come. While he already has quite the skillset and physical stature, there is still plenty of room for him to continue to develop on and off the field which is scary to consider. If he ends up with the right coaching staff, the sky is truly the limit for YGM.