C.J. Thorpe Open to All Suitors

Although his dad played for Penn State and the Nittany Lions have extended a scholarship, Pittsburgh Central Catholic sophomore offensive tackle C.J. Thorpe says he's open to all schools, including the University of Wisconsin.

Pittsburgh Central Catholic sophomore offensive tackle C.J. Thorpe recognizes the presumption about his recruiting process.

Thorpe’s dad, Chris, played for the Nittany Lions in the 1980s and were one of his first scholarship offers. Does the 6-4, 300-pound Thorpe weight every new offer he received against the Nittany Lions?

“Not really, because my dad isn’t as gung-ho about Penn State as most people would believe him to be,” Thorpe told Scout.com. “He is really open minded about everything. He understands it’s about where I want to go and where I feel most comfortable.”

Wisconsin offensive line coach Joe Rudolph is banking on the Badgers’ rich offensive line tradition as a means to get Thorpe interested. Starting to recruit Thorpe when he was at Pittsburgh, Rudolph extended an offer to him earlier this week.

“They’ve been showing a lot of love for a while, sending me mail and coming to my practices,” said Thorpe “They’ve been sending me information about their camps, so it was good to be able to get it. It felt good.”

In Thorpe’s mind, his biggest strength on the field are his footwork, speed and aggressiveness, three things he feels gives him a distinct advantage over a lot of people. Off the field, Thorpe said his biggest asset is having so many people to turn to who know what the recruiting process is all about.

“I just try to go to flow,” Thorpe said. “I talk to my dad about everything. He’s already been through it so he gives me a lot of pointers. He is more of a guideline of what would be smart to do. I use him more as help if I don’t understand something, because he leaves a lot of it up to me. I go off of my friends who have gone through the recruiting process or are a little bit further into it. I kind of have a lot of people who help me through it and make some of the decisions.”

Holding additional offers from Arizona State, Auburn, Maryland,

Pittsburgh, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia, Thorpe said he’s equal to everybody and wants to look into every school before making his decision. Even so, getting the offer from the Nittany Lions was a big deal.

“It was a huge deal for me because it’s the illustrious Penn State,” said Thorpe. “It’s a really big offer to get. Being one of my earliest offers, it was really good to know that a big school was interested.”

Thorpe said he plans to hit the camp circuit this summer in order to generate more interest.

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