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Penn State signee Jayson Oweh joined by teammate Cody Romano
Penn State signed two of New Jersey’s premier recruits this winter in defensive end Jayson Oweh and receiver Justin Shorter. Still, the Nittany Lions staff wasn’t quite finished acquiring talent from the Garden State.
Cody Romano, who attends Blair Academy (Blairstown, N.J.) with Oweh, announced last Wednesday that he’s accepted a preferred walk-on opportunity at Penn State. The 6-foot-1, 210-pound prospect considered a few other programs, including Connecticut and Bryant University (FCS), before finalizing his college plans.
He attended the Nittany Lions’ victory over Nebraska on Nov. 18 alongside Oweh, who chose Penn State over Ohio State in December. Romano received a PWO offer from the program two weeks later.
“The visit and getting to meet the coaches — who were all great guys — is what made not only me, but my parents too, fall in love with the place,” Romano told Land of 10.
Penn State is considering Romano at linebacker and safety. He secured 60 tackles, 8 pass breakups and 4 interceptions, returning 2 for touchdowns, in the 2017 season.
“Cody is, in my opinion, a throwback football player that just loves the game,” Blair Academy coach Jim Saylor said. “He has great speed and is always finding the ball. Hits like a linebacker but has defensive back speed.”
— Cody Romano (@CodyRomano3) February 14, 2018
Romano knows his path to the field won’t be easy. He’ll arrive on campus this summer in relative anonymity compared to Oweh and Penn State’s other 22 scholarship freshmen.
Echoing what walk-on quarterback Grayson Kline told Land of 10 earlier this month, a lack of recruiting hype won’t prevent Romano from competing at a high level. His collegiate goals reflect that mindset.
“Earn a scholarship, and get on the field within the next two years,” he said. ” I want to make the team better in any way possible.”
Saylor, who played with James Franklin at East Stroudsburg University, is confident Penn State improved its roster by adding Romano.
“He is going to be an impact player at whatever program gives him an opportunity because his work ethic and drive to get better is second to none,” Saylor said in December.
Oweh, considered one of the Nittany Lions’ marquee signees of 2018, reacted with enthusiasm about having a familiar face on the field in Happy Valley.
“Jayson was so excited,” Romano said. “We’ve grown really close and we just can’t wait to be on the same team again. … He’s been like a brother ever since I got to Blair.”
Watch Romano’s 2017 season highlights here:
Nittany Lions target Ohio State commit Doug Nester
Doug Nester verbally committed to Ohio State before his junior season, but that won’t stop other college programs from pursuing his signature. The Buckeyes pledge added a scholarship offer from Penn State last Wednesday, providing him with yet another Big Ten option to consider.
Nester, a 6-6, 295-pound tackle, attends Spring Valley (Huntington, W.V.) High School. He started receiving Power 5 offers as a freshman and announced plans last August to play at Ohio State. His other offers include Alabama, Florida, Louisville, Michigan State, Nebraska, Tennessee, West Virginia and Virginia Tech.
Considered the No. 8 tackle and No. 52 overall recruit for 2019 in the 247Sports composite, Nester is the only member of Ohio State’s next class. He ranks second among West Virginia products behind 5-star tackle Darnell Wright, who added a Nittany Lions offer on Jan. 30.
Wright also lives in Huntington, where new Penn State assistant coach Ja’Juan Sieder previously spent time on the Marshall staff.
The Nittany Lions are still searching for an offensive line commitment in the 2019 cycle. Penn State signed a pair of top-10 tackles (Nana Asiedu and Rasheed Walker) this winter. Only Ohio State also accomplished that feat at the position.
Top-ranked 2019 tackle Devontae Dobbs speaks highly of the Nittany Lions, while other highly rated Penn State targets at the position include Xavier Truss (Warwick, R.I.), William Putnam (Tampa, Fla.) and Trevor Keegan (Crystal Lake, Ill.).
Watch Nester’s junior-season highlights here:
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