Recruits on Rivalry Renewal

The rivalry between Penn State and Pittsburgh will be returning to the gridiron for the 2016-2017 seasons. The 97th meeting of the two in-state rivals is getting plenty of attention -- including from recruits.

The storied rivalry between Penn State and Pittsburgh is officially coming back for the 2016 and 2017 seasons.

Since Tuesday's announcement, this addition to both team's schedules has been the talk of the town.

Okay, in actuality more like the entire state of Pennsylvania.

Although this decision won't affect any class that has enrolled in Penn State or Pittsburgh currently, it will be on the schedule for several of the upcoming recruiting classes.

But how big of a deal is the renewal of the historic in-state rivalry to recruits?

Top Penn State safety prospect and Jeannette HS standout Demetrious Cox has grown up around both schools, and seems to reflect the attitude of most recruits towards the rivalry.

"I think it is great for college football," Cox said. "And it is great for both schools. It's a rivalry that goes way back, and should be fun to watch."

If Cox and the other members of the Class of 2012 graduate on time, they will be gone the year before the Lions take the field against their in-state foe.

But -- if they redshirt, they will be in their fifth and final season, and have the opportunity to take on the Panthers.

The Lions first Class of 2012 commit Howland HS (Ohio) OL Anthony Stanko, sums it up well.

"Regardless of when it is, I would love to play in that game," Stanko said. "It's going to be a great battle of Pennsylvania."

The sentiment seems to ring true for other commits and recruits -- including West Roxbury, Mass., standout LB and PSU commit Camren Williams.

"I think it will be huge," Williams said. "Every state has an in college rivalry that is always really fun to watch and experience."

He continued somewhat jokingly, "A lot of Pittsburgh kids probably wanted to go to Penn State, but never got a scholarship to go there -- so those kids will play extra hard against Penn State, which will make it a really fun game to watch."

But how will the new series impact recruits guaranteed to be around for the game?

The prospects in the Class of 2013 would be playing their senior year at their chosen institution in the 2016 season.

Take it from Cedar Cliff HS standout TE Adam Breneman, the renewal of the rivalry is pretty attractive.

"I think it is awesome," Breneman said. "It was kind of dumb not to have the two in-state BCS schools not play each other in non-conference play. I know a lot of people around here are really excited about it."

The Lions upcoming classes of prospects, are equally excited about being part of the 97th meeting between the two schools.


Fight On State Top Stories