The speculation that Joe Paterno’s year-to-year contract status is having an adverse effect on Penn State’s football recruiting efforts won’t go away, and what happened Monday won’t do anything to change that.
Dorien Bell, a 6-foot-1, 215-pound linebacker from Monroeville, made a verbal commitment to Ohio State on Monday afternoon at a press conference at his school. Bell played at Gateway High School for former Penn State wide receiver Terry Smith.
Considered one of the top prospects in the country for the Class of 2009, Bell had scholarship offers from more than 30 colleges — including Penn State — according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He was at Ohio State’s spring game over the weekend.
Bell is the second major recruit to spurn a scholarship from the Nittany Lions for the Buckeyes in about than a month. Jeannette quarterback Terrelle Pryor, the consensus top senior in the country this year, signed with Ohio State on March 20.
There are rumors that the Buckeyes could be landing another western Pennsylvania player soon. Rumors have been circulating that Pryor’s teammate, running back/receiver/ defensive back/return man Jordan Hall, is close to giving a commitment to Ohio State, perhaps later this week.
Reached Monday, Jeannette coach Ray Reitz said it is being considered but isn’t a certainty. Hall also has offers from Penn State, Notre Dame, Michigan, Pitt and West Virginia, according to Reitz.
— Philip Cmor