Q&A: Running With the Pack

Virginia receiver Hamilton found his college of choice after visiting Penn State with several other prospects. He signed with the Lions Wednesday.

DaeSean Hamilton didn't know what to expect two years ago when his familiarity with the recruiting process truly began. But two football seasons and 17 offers later, the 6-foot, 180-pound wide receiver from Mountain View High (Stafford, Va.), had the offers he wasn't quite sure would come and landed at a school he didn't know much about.

Hamilton pledged with a pack of future Nittany Lions after an official visit weekend at Penn State in early December, and has been solid ever since. He signed his binding National Letter of Intent Wednesday, and spoke to Fight On State about the recruiting process, when he knew he was ready to commit and more.

FOS: What are your thoughts on signing?

Hamilton: It's one of the most important things in life, to pick your college and decide where you're going to spend the next four years of your life. It's really special to me.

FOS: What surprised you most about the recruiting process?

Hamilton: I didn't know what to expect when all of this started, and whether I'd even receive any scholarship offers in the first place. But I'd have to say the amount of phone calls you get -- from coaches, to reporters, to all types of different people. That really caught me by surprise.

FOS: What do you like most about this Class of 2013?

Hamilton: I think the class as a whole … before I even joined the class, it was a bunch of guys that stuck together, and were really high on Penn State. They were going to stick together through the end of the sanctions, and I think that's the main focal point and core of this class.

FOS: What is one area of your game you'd like to improve over the spring and once you are on campus?

Hamilton: I'd live to improve my speed and my running ability. College football is all about getting open and catching the ball, and I catch the ball very well from what coaches tell me. So I just want to work on complementing that.

FOS: What did you like most, or what stood out to you, about the 2012 Penn State team?

Hamilton: I think I liked most the way they bounced back from all the things going on. By going 8-4, they shocked the nation, who thought that they were going to be hit hard by the sanctions and have a tough year after getting hit with all of that and having all the turmoil going on at the school. One of the other things that affected me was them going out in the last game of the season against Wisconsin and getting the win. That was big.

FOS: When did you know you wanted to commit to Penn State?

Hamilton: It was when I was getting ready to leave the official visit (on Dec. 9). I had been everywhere else, and seen everything else, every aspect possible, and the behind the scenes of all the other schools. I basically felt Penn State was the best school educational-wise, to get on the field, and to get to the next level and the NFL. I felt like I had no one else to visit, and Penn State basically felt natural at that point.

FOS: What do you want to study at Penn State and what are you doing off the field to prepare football-wise?

Hamilton: I want to study communications. I'd like to be a broadcaster or be behind the scenes. It doesn't really matter to me. For football, I'm training everyday and running routes in my free time as much as I can. I've been lifting weights, but I can't wait to get big and follow the [PSU] strength program [which he received after Signing Day] so I can head into school and hit the ground running.

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