With a limited number of scholarships available for the Class of 2007, Penn State has been taking a patient approach to recruiting this year. The slow-but-sure method appears to be paying off, as Greensburg, Pa., standout Nick Sukay became the fifth Scout.com four-star athlete to commit to the Nittany Lions.
I have committed to Penn State, Sukay said. I called coach (Tom) Bradley and told him I wanted to be a Nittany Lion. I then spoke to Joe Paterno and he was pretty pumped. Coach Bradley always tells me that Paterno always asks about me.
Seven players overall have pledged to PSU.
A 6-foot-3, 200-pounder, Sukay projects as a wide receiver or safety at the next level. At Greensburg Central Catholic last year, he caught 29 passes for 660 yards and eight scores while coming through with 58 tackles, seven forced fumbles and six interceptions.
At the 7-on-7's that we have been doing I have fun at wide receiver, but safety is really growing on me, he said. It really doesn't matter and Penn State has talked about possibly playing both ways.
His last name is pronounced SOO-Kay.
Offensively, Sukay is a polished receiver with great route-running skills, good speed and an ability to beat man coverage. Defensively, he anticipates well, puts himself in good position and is equally adept in pass coverage and run support.
More importantly, he has a strong competitive streak. Sukay is focused on winning above all else, and is willing to sacrifice his own game for the good of the team.
Sukay received a Penn State offer near the beginning of June while on an unofficial visit to Happy Valley, and the Nittany Lions quickly took a place among his leader. He visited Pitt the following week and Notre Dame last weekend before announcing for Penn State.
I know a lot of people at all three schools that I was looking at, but that really wasn't a factor when it came down to it, Sukay explained. It all came down to where I fit in better. I have always had a passion for Penn State football. When I came to the Ohio State game last year and saw 110,000 fans I knew then that's where I wanted to be. I have never seen anything like that in my life. I can't wait to get out on that field.
Michigan, Michigan State, Syracuse and West Virginia had also offered Sukay. But in the end it was a three team race.
Notre Dame has all the history and tradition, he said. Pittsburgh was tough: it's close to home and I felt so comfortable there. I just called both staffs and it was one of the hardest things I have ever done in my life.
Sukay is now focusing his direction on graduating high school early. He is getting ready to begin a college writing course this week. He will take the class twice a week for six weeks and will be on par for his early graduation plan.
I'm just trying to get a head start, he said. I'm not saying I'll play as a freshman, but you never know.
Check out Penn State’s entire commitment list.