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Elite RB Noah Cain schedules trip to Penn State
Fresh off his latest trip to Ohio State, coveted running back recruit Noah Cain is scheduled to visit another Big Ten title contender this month. The IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.) junior told Land of 10 in January he intended to schedule spring travel plans to Penn State. He confirmed Monday that he will journey to campus for the final weekend of April.
The upcoming unofficial visit was first reported Sunday evening by 247Sports’ Steve Wiltfong.
Cain, a 5-foot-11, 209-pound prospect, has spent most of his prep career in the national recruiting spotlight. He rose to prominence at Guyer (Denton, Texas) High School, telling me at the start of his sophomore season: “Every single play before I carry the ball — even before any rankings came out — I’ve always told myself I’m the best.”
His transfer to IMG, arguably the most well-known prep football program in America, further pushed along a compelling recruitment. Cain, who shares the Ascenders backfield with 5-star running back Trey Sanders, has rushed for 3,290 yards (8.1 per carry) and 38 touchdowns through three high school seasons, according to MaxPreps.
Penn State is among Cain’s newest suitors. Running backs coach Ja’Juan Seider extended a scholarship offer on behalf of the Nittany Lions on Jan. 30, and his presence on the staff made an immediate impact.
“I did have a good relationship with [Seider] when he was at Florida,” Cain told Land of 10 hours after receiving the offer. “He keeps it real all of the time and doesn’t sugarcoat anything. … He said they want a workhorse back like Saquon [Barkley].”
Considered the No. 2 running back and No. 35 overall recruit in the 247Sports 2019 composite rankings, Cain will arrive in Happy Valley one week after fellow blue-chip running back Devyn Ford uses an official visit for Penn State’s Blue-White Game.
Ford is set to announce his collegiate decision in May, while Wiltfong reports a commitment isn’t expected from Cain until after the season. Cain previously told Land of 10 he will enroll early at the university of his choice next January, and other notable contenders include LSU, Ohio State, Oklahoma and Texas.
Penn State could potentially capitalize on a positive campus trip to secure an official visit from Cain later in this process.
In the aftermath of Saquon Barkley’s remarkable run in State College, Penn State remains in an excellent position at running back. The 2018 backfield will feature two former 5-star prospects (Miles Sanders and Ricky Slade), while elite talents Cain and Ford take a closer look at the Nittany Lions in April.
Premier prospects Julian Fleming and Paris Johnson Jr. visit
Penn State started its week on the recruiting trail in grand fashion Monday, welcoming a pair of America’s most impressive high school sophomore prospects to campus. The Nittany Lions hosted in-state receiver Julian Fleming and Ohio tackle Paris Johnson Jr., who are listed second and seventh overall, respectively, in the 247Sports 2020 composite rankings.
Johnson shared plans to visit Penn State during the weekend, and we previewed his trip in our recruiting notebook on Sunday. The 6-7, 275-pound St. Xavier (Cincinnati) High School standout tweeted a photo from team facilities on Monday afternoon.
Penn State fans were quick to respond on social media, reveling in this initial look at Johnson in a Nittany Lions uniform:
— Paris Johnson Jr. (@ParisJohnsonJr) April 2, 2018
Johnson, who carries more than 30 Power 5 offers halfway through his high school career, received a Penn State offer on Jan. 24. Ohio State figures to be a major force in his recruitment, though powerhouse programs from across America already provide substantial competition.
The same can be said for Fleming, a Southern Columbia (Catawissa, Pa.) High School star who earned a Nittany Lions offer last June. This 6-2, 180-pound playmaker, who tops all receivers in 2020 composite rankings, recently added offers from Alabama, Ohio State, Tennessee and Wisconsin.
The Crimson Tide’s charge includes former Penn State receivers coach Josh Gattis. This was Fleming’s first Penn State visit since the longtime James Franklin assistant departed, presenting an opportunity for him to build further rapport with replacement David Corley.
Fleming, who also is among Pennsylvania’s finest young basketball players and track and field competitors, is presently focused on recovering from surgery on Feb. 1 that repaired a torn labrum in his right hip.
He absolutely dominated as an underclassman, collecting 105 receptions for 2,418 yards (23 per catch) and 33 touchdowns. Fleming remains the only in-state 2020 prospect to secure a Nittany Lions offer.
Expect detailed reaction to Fleming’s latest Happy Valley visit later this week in a Penn State recruiting notebook, as Land of 10 is set to speak with him upon his return home.
Nittany Lions offer Alabama DB Trikweze Bridges
Penn State added another defensive back to its 2019 recruiting target board Friday, extending an offer to 4-star safety Trikweze Bridges. The Lanett (Ala.) High School junior tweeted news of his Nittany Lions offer, which further crowds a large collection of college options.
Considered the No. 16 safety and a top-250 overall prospect in 2019 composite rankings, Bridges has enjoyed a recruitment surge since late February. During the last five weeks he’s added offers from Florida State, LSU, Ohio State, Ole Miss and Penn State.
Bridges, who visited Oregon and Tennessee in March, provides considerable length (6-3, 175 pounds) in the defensive secondary. His 2017 campaign included 98 tackles and 9 interceptions. He helped lead Lanett to its first Class 2A state championship.
Watch Bridges’ junior-season highlights here:
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