As a senior linebacker at Bethlehem Catholic High in Bethlehem, PA, Patrick Bedics (6'1", 230, 4.52) was selected to the Associated Press All-State 2nd Team and the Pennsylvania Football News All-State 1st Team. He also played both fullback and linebacker for the Pennsylvania team in last year's Big 33 all-star game, leading the team in tackles.
After spending the 2002 football season at Hargrave Military Academy in Chatham, Virginia, Bedics decided to accept preferred walkon status at Penn State. He enrolled this past January and is anxious to begin practicing with the team this weekend when Spring practice officially begins.
"I was a late qualifier," Patrick said regarding his decision to attend Hargrave. "I actually qualified in the summer, in June basically, so that was pretty late. I was getting recruited by a lot of schools, but I really couldn't get into any schools because of my SAT scores. Then I qualified, but everybody had already signed their guys, so it was kind of a tough situation.
"I looked into Hargrave and decided to go there. I had a pretty good year there, I led the team in tackles with around 115. So, I got recruited by a lot of schools. I was talking to Marshall and some of the southern schools like LSU and South Carolina. A lot of schools didn't put an offer on the table because I think they were waiting on other people.
"Boston College offered me in the middle of my season at Hargrave. They wanted me to commit right away and I wanted to see what else happened so it kind of fell through.
"Penn State was involved a little bit during my senior year, but not too much. After this past season, we started talking to them. I talked to Fran Ganter the most. My dad put a call in and we sent a tape up and they liked it a lot. They only had 11 scholarship openings this year, so they told me to come in as a walkon and earn a scholarship. I thought I could do that by working real hard.
"I'm pretty excited about Spring practice starting, to get to show everybody what I can do.
"I like being close to home. It's only 2 hours and 20 minutes from my house and I like to go home on the weekends to see my family, so I just thought it was the best place for me. I love their facilities and I've always liked Joe Paterno so it was kind of like a dream come true almost."
"He can play the Mike backer," said Hargrave head coach Robert Prunty. "He plays the run and the pass. He's very athletic. He led the team in tackles. He ran a 4.52 at the combine and benched 225 pounds 20 times. I just think Patrick's going to develop into a special player.
"I'll tell you this, after spring ball, Patrick Bedics will be on scholarship. I think he's definitely good enough to play at Penn State. I don't like to hype kids up, but this kid is a special player. He will make that team and he will contribute early."
Coach Prunty should know Division I talent. He indicated that Hargrave had 41 kids (including Ahmad Brooks who many believe was the top linebacker prospect in the country following his senior season) sign with Division I schools this year.