Posluszny Picks Penn State

Paul Posluszny decided on Monday to accept a scholarship offer to play for Linebacker U. He talks about his commitment and the role that the Nittany Lion coaching staff believes he will play on defense.

Name: Paul Posluszny
Position: LB
Height: 6'2"
Weight: 212 pounds
40-yard dash: 4.62
Bench Press: 16 reps of 185 pounds
School: Hopewell SHS, Aliquippa, PA

Paul is one of the premier high school linebackers in Pennsylvania. In fact, he is currently ranked by TheInsiders.com as the 14th best linebacker prospect in the nation.

As a junior, he had 102 tackles and 8 sacks. He also rushed for over 1,360 yards including 15 touchdowns. He was named 1st Team All-Conference at both RB and LB as well as the Parkway Conference MVP. He was also selected to both the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Fabulous 22 West and the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review Terrific 25 West.

Paul, however, will play linebacker in college and this past Monday, he called Penn State to tell them that he'd like to play for the Nittany Lions.

"On Monday after football practice, I sat down and talked with my head coach, Coach Vestal," Paul explained.  "I said, 'I think it's time and I'd like to commit to Penn State', so he called Coach Bradley for me and I talked to him and told him I wanted to come play football for Penn State.

"He seemed very excited.  He said that I'll like it up there a lot and that it's a good fit, I'll fit in well into the program."

Coach Bradley, who was recruiting Paul for Penn State, invited Paul and his family to State College last Thursday.  Paul went with both his mother and father and needless to say, he enjoyed the visit.

"I got the opportunity to meet all the coaches, I talked to Coach Paterno for 20 to 30 minutes.  We toured their football building, went through the indoor facilities, looked at all their practice facilities, took a real basic tour around the campus, went inside the stadium and then at the end, I just sat down and talked with my position coach, Coach Vanderlinden.

"Basically, I just loved everything about the place.  I felt comfortable there and I could see myself going there.

"They like the fact that I could hopefully be able to play in space for them, that I'll be able to move around on the outside and maybe get outside the box sometimes.

"Coach Vanderlinden went over their system on defense.  He just talked through some quick basic schemes just to let me see what it would be like playing linebacker for them.  He said that he could see me playing at either one of the outside linebacker spots, either the weak side or the strong side.  He talked about how it's Linebacker U, the tradition there is very important and it's a great place to play."

Did Penn State talk to him about the number of scholarships they have to offer this year?

"I think it's only around 13 and they said they're only going to take 1 or 2 linebackers, so I thought well I better decide quick because I think I want to go here."

Penn State was Paul's childhood favorite.  He attended several games growing up, the Miami game last year and the Penn State Nike Camp this April.

"With the past trips, I never really went there trying to decide if this would be a place for me or not.  As a younger kid, I basically just went up there to watch games.  But now, once you go up there and you think, 'Wow, I could be here, I could participate in this football program', then it changes things a little bit."

Although Coach Bradley told Paul back in May that Penn State would be offering him a scholarship, Posluszny had yet to receive one in writing prior to his visit last week.

"They waited until I went up there on Thursday and Coach Paterno handed me the paper.  As soon as we got there, I said [to Coach Bradley], 'Coach, I didn't get anything in the mail yet do you think it's going to be coming any day, and he said, 'Give me a couple more minutes and you'll see', and then when we sat down and talked with Coach Paterno.  He gave me the offer."

According to Paul, he received scholarship offers from 13 schools.  Some of the other schools to offer Posluszny a scholarship reportedly include: Boston College, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan State, Northwestern, Pitt, Purdue, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

Although it may seem as though it was an easy decision for him, it was not.

"I would say it was real tough because I got the chance to talk to so many people and I think that's what made it tough.  No matter where you go, everyone's going to have nice facilities and the campus is going to be beautiful, but I think it's the people that make places special.  That's the only reason it was tough.

"I've been to Pitt so many times and I've been able to talk to all their coaches and I really like them.  I went up to Northwestern and I love their coaching staff and Purdue, I thought their coaches were great also.  So, that was the hard part, just saying no to certain coaches, saying, 'I'm sorry, but I picked another school'."

Paul, a good student, carries a 3.7 GPA.  He already scored a 1110 on the SAT.

"I'm very excited.  I didn't realize how big of a deal it was until I told everyone."

Is there a chance he could change his mind?

"No, I gave them my word.  You can't go back on that and I don't see any reason why I would want to anyway."

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