Saquon Barkley’s story could have been a lot different if he would’ve stuck with his original commitment back in 2015. Perhaps Rutgers could have been a lot different, too.
When Barkley was a high school recruit, Rutgers was one of the first schools to offer him. And, believe it or not, the 13th ranked running back of the 2015 recruiting class was committed to becoming a Scarlet Knight. But, we already know he didn’t wind up in Piscataway.
James Franklin came knocking, made a pitch and the rest is history. Barkley went on to help Penn State win a B1G title in 2016 and finish with back-to-back 11-win seasons in 2016 and 2017.
So, what was it that sold Barkley on Penn State? Not only was it Franklin and the staff, Barkley told Dan Patrick it had a lot to do with the atmosphere in Happy Valley.
“I committed to Rutgers first. I was going to Rutgers,” Barkley said on the Dan Patrick Show. “And then James Franklin and Penn State offered me and kinda stole me.”
When asked what sold him on Penn State, Barkley continued on.
“Obviously, Coach Franklin and all those guys did an amazing job, but I don’t know if you guys have ever been to a Penn State game, but if you go to a White Out and 110,000 fans screaming, I don’t think it can get any better than that.
“I haven’t been down south really, so I can’t speak on them, but all the places I’ve been, no one competes with Penn State.”
Barkley went on to rush for 3,843 yards during his career at Penn State, eclipsing the 1,000-yard barrier each of his three seasons in State College. He also accounted for 54 total touchdowns and 5,038 yards from scrimmage.
Barkley went on to be the No. 2 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, selected by the New York Giants.
— Dan Patrick Show (@dpshow) January 29, 2020