By Alan Robinson
The Associated Press
JEANNETTE -- Terrelle Pryor's choice for now is no choice.
Pryor, the Jeannette High School quarterback who is considered the nation's top unsigned high school football recruit, decided at the last minute Wednesday not to commit on national signing day and will delay his decision -- a major plus for in-state Penn State and Oregon.
"I don't have a choice yet," Pryor said.
Pryor, the only QB in Pennsylvania history to rush for 4,000 yards and throw for 4,000 in his career, recently narrowed his choices to Ohio State, Michigan and Penn State, with the Buckeyes and Wolverines apparently his top two choices. Ohio State looked to be the favorite.
Oregon was in the original mix, but Pryor said Monday the Ducks were out. Now that Pryor has reopened his recruiting, he plans to visit there.
"Oregon is still in it," Pryor said. "They're definitely in the picture and I'll be flying out to Oregon to check it out."
Pryor also is an all-state basketball player and, with Jeannette moving into tournament play, he is uncertain when he will have time to make his additional campus visits. He isnát sure when he will make up his mind.
"We played 16 football games, won the state championship and two days later we jumped into basketball," Pryor said. "I haven't had that much time to get involved in the recruiting process. I'd like to take more time and be fair to all the coaches that recruited me, who spent a lot of time recruiting me."
With his father, Craig, apparently pressuring Pryor to take a closer look at Penn State -- he has never made an official visit to a school that is only a two-hour drive from his home -- Pryor decided not to announce his decision at a news conference attended by several hundred reporters, friends, family members and school officials.
"Me and my dad had a battle of differences, he wants me to go over it," Pryor said.
Pryor apparently was within hours of choosing Ohio State, but, when he woke up Wednesday morning, he decided he wasn't comfortable making his choice now.
"I had my mind set last night that I was going to go ... but Penn State is hitting me hard and I don't think I gave them a fair chance and I want to take a visit there," Pryor said. "Just check out their campus. Just give him (coach Joe Paterno) a chance, he's a great guy. I just think I should go there."
Penn State assistant Tom Bradley has been recruiting Pryor for months and months and, Pryor said, "They've been hitting my father hard. They been to my dad's house so many times. My dad's in love with them. Tom Bradley probably knows the town more than he does."
Pryor's decision to wait is uncommon, as most top players have long since committed, but he doesn't not have to sign until April 1, and other players in the past have waited past signing day to commit. Charlie Batch, the Steelers' quarterback who is a Pryor family friend, doesn't think Pryor will need until April to make up his mind.
"At the end of the day, he's not clear as far as what he wants to do," Batch said. "He wants to take a look at Oregon and Penn State. This is the decision he has to live with the next four years. ... I told him, 'Don't make the decision under pressure.' He wasn't comfortable making a decision today."
Batch won't make a recommendation for Pryor, who must make up his mind by himself.
"All we're trying to do is put all the facts out on the table," Jeannette football coach Ray Reitz said. "We're trying to prevent outside influences from telling him where to go. If he makes the wrong decision, he is going to be miserable. He wants to makes an informed, intelligent decision."