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Blessed & Honored: Penn State Hosts First Visitors of Spring Practice

With spring practice officially underway, that means the busy spring recruiting period on Happy Valley is underway as well

Michigan State v Penn State Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images


One of the most notable and important visitors to campus was four-star defensive end Brian Robinson.

The Ohio native is one of Penn State’s top defensive end targets in the 2024 cycle. Entering the weekend Michigan appeared to be the team to beat in his recruitment, but this past weekend gave the Nittany Lions and new defensive line coach Deion Barnes an opportunity to make a move in his recruitment. Robinson has been a regular visitor to campus during his recruitment and likely will continue to be until he makes a college decision, this is one that should continue to be a Big Ten fight.

There was also a contingency of visitors from California who made it to campus. This included four-star 2025 cornerback Jett White.

This was not White’s first trip to campus. He also visited campus for spring practice last March. After committing to USC early in his recruitment, White has slowed things down some while also continuing to take visits.

2024 defensive lineman T.A. Cunningham was also in from California.

Coming out of the visit Penn State appears to be in a sneaky good spot for Cunningham. This is not to say the Nittany Lions will land Cunningham, but getting an official visit this summer from the four-star defensive lineman is a real possibility.

T.A.’s little brother TK Cunningham also tagged along for the visit, and the 2027 (!) prospect left campus with an offer.

White’s recruitment is one Penn State is in way more than they should be for a four-star kid from California. Multiple visits on his own dime speak to that. While it’s hard to envision White ending up playing for Penn State, the Nittany Lions landing an official visit from him next year certainly is not out of the realm of possibility. White feels like a player that could be a Penn State lean if he were closer to Happy Valley.

New Jersey was also well represented. This included 2025 safety Ma’Khi Jones, cornerback Renick Dorilas, and 2026 lineman Robert Carstarphen Jr.

Penn State has not recruited New Jersey nearly as well as you would expect in recent cycles. Albeit, some of this is due to Jersey having been down. That said, it’s clear with the addition of Khalil Ahmed to the staff that Coach Franklin wants to put a greater emphasis on the Garden State moving forward.

2024 defensive back target Jameer Grimsley was also on campus.

The Tampa native was on campus for a two day visit. Pulling a defensive back from Florida is never easy, but Penn State has put themselves in a good spot for Grimsley. Throw in JaJuan Seider’s ability to recruit in Florida, and Penn State can not be overlooked here.

To circle back locally, 2026 running back D’Antae Shaffey was also on campus.

Shaffey is as local as it gets being a State College High standout. While 2026 is a long time from now, even in college football recruiting, the buzz from people in the area and around the Little Lions program is that Shaffey could be a special one. So, the sooner the Nittany Lion coaching staff can begin to form that relationship with him and the more often he gets to campus the better.


Among the visitors to campus were also multiple players who left with an offer from the Nittany Lion coaching staff. 2025 offensive linemen Caleb Williams and Aidan Lynch were among those to leave campus with offers.

Williams is a Virginia native while Lynch came to campus from New Jersey. This puts both of them squarely within the region for Penn State. With the coaching staff extending offers after seeing them in person it is clear that there is interest there from James Franklin, Phil Trautwein, and Mike Yurcich. Moving forward, they could be offensive linemen to watch for additional visits to campus.

Another 2025 offer that was extended went out to Antwon Thomas.

Penn State became the first Power 5 program to offer the Michigan athlete. The Nittany Lions have done a decent job of recruiting Michigan in recent cycles so that they could make them contenders in this recruitment as it continues to develop.

2024 running back Cameron Jones was also among the California contingency that made it to campus, and he headed back to the West Coast with an offer.

This offer is unlikely to bear much fruit for the Nittany Lions. When a player makes that far of a visit unofficially, they are all but guaranteed to leave campus with an offer. Not only is Williams unlikely to travel that far for college, he is also more than likely further down the Nittany Lion running back board. Visits like this are done with the intent of building relationships with schools, coaching staffs, trainers/handlers, etc. as much as anything else.

Let’s talk in-state 2026 recruits again. Pittsburgh area linebacker Daiveon Taylor was on campus, and left with an offer.

Penn State become the first Power 5 and second FBS offer for the Bishop Canevin prospect. While, again 2026 is a long ways away, it is clear that Taylor will be one of the top in-state prospect for the cycle. So, getting involved in his recruitment this early can only be a positive for the Nittany Lions.