PSU picks up another 2018 recruit

One day after wrapping up its top-15 2017 recruiting class, the Penn State football program got to work continuing what is looking like it will be an even better crop in 2018.

Cumberland Valley Class 6A all-state player Charlie Katshir gave Nittany Lion football coach James Franklin a great birthday present when he announced on Thursday his intentions to sign with Penn State.

“My dream has come true!! I’m coming home #WEARE #107K,” Katshir posted on his Twitter page.

Penn State now has eight recruits in a class that probably will wind up somewhere around the 21 the Lions signed on Wednesday. The Lions’ 2018 class currently is ranked first in the country.

One of the other early commitments in Penn State’s class for next year is Camp Hill tight end Zack Kuntz. Kuntz and Katshir are close friends.

“Congrats to my boy @CKatshir on finally joining the family!! WE ARE forever brotha!! Love you man!” Kuntz wrote.

Katshir actually is the first Lion 2018 pledge that isn’t at least a consensus four-star prospect, but it wouldn’t be surprising if he is by the time next signing day rolls around. The Mid-Penn Conference Commonwealth Division first-team all-star also had early offers from Pitt, West Virginia, Virginia, Rutgers and Boston College.

He was voted all-state by the Pennsylvania high school football writers as a defensive back after making 74 tackles and intercepting three passes for the Eagles, despite playing most of the season with a labrum he tore in September. However, the 6-foot-3, 198-pounder is projected to grow into a linebacker at the next level.

“He runs well. He’s going to have to learn to play closer to the line of scrimmage. But he likes to stick his nose in there in the running game now, so he’s not afraid of that part of the game,” said Brian Dohn, the national recruiting analyst for Scout.com.

“Because of the way he runs and the way the college game is evolving, you always want to take those kids from safety and move them a little closer to the line and bulk them up a little bit.”

Linebacker is a position Penn State is expected to target heavily for 2018. Mercyhurst Prep’s Jesse Luketa also is a top target whose verbal is thought to be close by many recruiting analysts. Katshir and Luketa were among a select group of high school juniors invited to take unofficial visits to University Park on Sunday — the invitees generally are considered to be the recruits the Lions are focused on the most for the upcoming cycle.

“He wanted to be there. He knows there’s only a couple of linebackers they’re going to take, and there’s three really good ones in-state,” Dohn said of Katshir. “He wanted to make sure he got his spot. It just makes complete sense for him to go there.”

Katshir also had 524 yards and six touchdowns as a receiver, and he returned a kick for a score, too.

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