Are the Penn State Nittany Lions about to lose out on a 5-star recruit from their own backyard? And to a bitter conference rival?
That is what PSU recruiting insiders are fearing right now as the momentum for WR Julian Fleming appears to be evaporating in thin air for James Franklin and the Pennsylvania school.
Penn State insiders have basically waived the white flag today on their podcast that Brian Hartline has won the battle with 5? WR Julian Fleming. Their fans weren't too happy, a 130 comment page going strong. pic.twitter.com/V5eiN9EZ2f— jbook™ (@jbook37) May 14, 2019
Understandably, the Penn State faithful aren't taking the news well. Recruiting battles can be tough pills to swallow, and when a young man picks another team, it can feel like a spit in the face to "your" program.
The Penn State football program is becoming a laughingstock.— Michael James (@___michaeljames) May 13, 2019
Julian Fleming is now heavily projected to go to Ohio State.
Imagine how bad your recruiting program is if a kid doesn’t wanna go an hour & a half away & his girlfriend even goes to PSU.#WeAre? #DominateTheState? pic.twitter.com/GnPXUUYFXW
In this case, it seems that the 2020 prospect--the No. 1 WR in the class, No. 1 overall player in the state of Pennsylvania and the No. 6 prospect nationally--is simply sold on the future of Ohio State's program more than the one in Happy Valley. The Buckeyes have won each of the last two games between the teams in come-from-behind fashion, with PSU fans getting a horrible sense of deja vu during this head-to-head recruiting duel.
It baffles the Nittany Lion insiders that a rookie head coach in OSU's Ryan Day can poach the product of the small town of Catawissa, PA.
Penn State and Ohio State are constant on-field and recruiting rivals, with PSU ranked No. 9 national in the 2020 class rankings according to 247, with the Buckeyes right behind in 11th. Clemson, LSU, Alabama, and Miami make up the top four spots.