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Wednesday: Midwest State Rankings
No school in the East Region matches up with Penn State when it comes to taking care of business in their home state, but Boston College and Virginia are bringing in a lot of prospects within their state’s border.
Meanwhile, the move to the Big Ten for Maryland and Rutgers is not showing up in recruiting, particularly within their state borders, and new Connecticut coach Bob Diaco is off to a slow start within his home state as well.
And when it comes to the Commonwealth of Virginia, there are more uncommitted top prospects there than anywhere else.
Scout unveiled its updated East 150 earlier today, and now unveils its state-by-state look at the East Region:
Four-star defensive end Christian Wilkins of Suffield (Conn.) Academy is the only member of Connecticut’s top 10 players not committed, and UConn does not have a commitment from any of the other nine.
Boston College has three commits and Northwestern, Syracuse, Duke and Michigan, which landed the top player in five-star tight end Chris Clark of Avon (Conn.) Old Farms, all had success in the Nutmeg State.
There is a nice collection of talent in the class, and Alabama came in and landed the top player in Gonzaga offensive guard prospect Richie Petitbon. The No. 2 player, teammate and cornerback Marcus Lewis, is again open in his recruiting. He had made commitments to Virginia Tech and Florida, but is again exploring his options.
Virginia Tech, Virginia, Kentucky, Arizona, Penn state, Illinois and Connecticut each landed a player in the top 15, but Maryland has not. Its best chance sits with Friendship Academy offensive guard Quarvez Boulware.
Penn State has commitments from the No. 1 and No. 3 player in the state in Gaithersburg (Md.) High defensive end Kamonte Carter and Gaithersburg (Md.) Quince Orchard defensive tackle Adam McLean, respectively, and Greenbelt (Md.) Eleanor Roosevelt offensive tackle Isaiah Prince is the lone uncommitted prospect in the top 17.
Maryland’s lone commitment from the top 15 players in the state is Frederick (Md.) Linganore offensive tackle E.J. Donahue.
Westwood (Mass.) Xaverian defensive end Joe Gaziano, the top player in the state, is heading to Northwestern, but Boston College has commitments from three of the top five players and five of the top seven.
Notre Dame grabbed kicker Justin Yoon of Milton (Mass.) Academy, and Connecticut has a pair of players in the top 10, but there won’t be much going on in recruiting for a while in this class. The top 10 players are all committed.
Other schools, particularly Penn State, have had a field day in the Garden State. Penn State has commitments from five of the top eight players in the state. Alabama has the top prospect in Jersey City (N.J.) St. Peter’s Prep cornerback Minkah Fitzpatrick, but he is visiting other schools, including Penn State.
Syracuse is again making a move in state and has a pair of commitments while Temple grabbed a top 10 player in Erial (N.J.) Timber Creek cornerback Kareem Ali. Michigan, Miami, Ohio State, Boston College and Wisconsin each have top 20 players from the Garden State.
The big story, though, has been Rutgers, whose top committed in-state player is the No. 17 prospect. Also, Paramus (N.J.) Catholic receiver Najee Clayton is the only member of the top 20 not committed.
It’s still free game in Empire State for the top recruits as the top four remain uncommitted.
The big name on the board is Buffalo Canisius tight end/defensive end Tyrone Wheatley, but Trinity-Pawling (N.Y.) School defensive tackle/offensive tackle prospect Austrian Robinson, Mamaroneck (N.Y.) High tight end Alex Parkinson and New Rochelle (N.Y.) High running back Jonathan Forrest are also uncommitted.
Syracuse landed a pair of talented running backs, Boston College has a pair of commits from the state and Rutgers landed two players from New York City.
Penn State needed to dominate its home state, and it is doing exactly that.
The Nittany Lions have commitments from the top three players – Pittsburgh Baldwin offensive tackle Sterling Jenkings, Philadelphia St. Joseph’s Prep cornerback John Reid and Harrisburg (Pa.) Bishop McDevitt running back Andre Robinson – and also have five of the top six players in the class.
The exception is Monaca (Pa.) Central Valley cornerback Jordan Whitehead, who remains uncommitted but is considering Penn State. In fact, if Penn State wanted an in-state kid, it got him so far.
Michigan, Notre Dame, Rutgers, Maryland, Miami, Pittsburgh, Virginia, Northwestern, Connecticut and Temple all have Pennsylvania kids committed in their class, but none beat Penn State for a prospect.
The top talent in the state remains uncommitted as the top three players and seven of the top 10 are yet to make college decisions.
Five-star defensive end Josh Sweat of Chesapeake (Va.) Oscar Smith, five start outside linebacker prospect Ricky DeBerry of Richmond (Va.) St. Christopher and four-star defensive tackle Tim Settle of Manassas (Va.) Stonewall Jackson are the top three, and each are still open.
"I think it's a combination of things," Scout Mid-Atlantic recruiting analyst Michael Clark said. "First, the two big in-state programs -- Virginia and Virginia Tech -- have had a couple of tough seasons. As a result, major prospects in Virginia, who would normally commit to those schools earlier, are evaluating all their options. Each has numerous scholarship offers from across the country and unofficial visits to these schools are very expensive.
“ So, sometimes if a kid is really interested in a school and it's further away from home, he has to wait until his official visit to see that school or schools. All of these factors can cause a prospect to commit later."
Also, Virginia and Virginia Tech are yet to have success with the high-end prospects. The Cavaliers and Hokies each have only one commitment from a top 20 player, and Clemson as two. Penn State, Michigan, South Carolina, North Carolina, Boston College and Tennessee each landed a top 20 player from the state as well.
West Virginia doesn’t produce a ton of Division I talent, but his year there are already four players committed to FBS schools, including a trio to Power 5 conference schools.
The best player in the class is four-star tight end Stone Wolfley of Morgantown (W.V.) High, which play in the shadows of WVU. And, naturally, he is committed to the Mountaineers.