Joe Paterno received a double dose of good news yesterday.
The Penn State coach was awarded a three-year-contract extension. And then he received a commitment from blue chip recruit Kevin Newsome.
A dual-threat quarterback from Chesapeake, Va., Newsome announced his decision at a press conference. He selected the Lions over Virginia Tech.
Newsome originally gave his pledge to Michigan in the spring, but backed out after the Wolverines recruited two other quarterbacks. He admitted yesterday that the opportunity to play almost immediately favored Penn State.
The Lions announced last week that sophomore quarterback Pat Devlin was transferring out of Penn State. Starter Daryll Clark has one more season on eligibility left. With no other scholarship quarterbacks in the system, Newsome could have the job as a sophomore.
"What helped with Penn State a lot was I would get a little more playing time a little bit earlier," Newsome told reporters. "Every quarterback wants to come in and be able to challenge someone for the spot, so I want to learn from Daryll Clark for a year, and by the time I'm a sophomore be ready to take control of the Penn State offense."
The Lions also have a commitment from West Catholic quarterback Curtis Drake. But the mobile senior is expected to move to wide receiver or defensive back.
Newsome plans to enroll at Penn State in January and hopes to participate in spring practice. He can't, however, actually sign with Penn State until February.
Who: Kevin Newsome Jr., Chatham (Va.) Hargrave Military Academy.
Position: Dual-threat quarterback.
Weight: 217 pounds.
40 time: 4.57 seconds
GPA: 3.5, plans to major in business.
Skinny: Renounced commitment to Michigan in August.. . . Expected to enroll in January. . . . Is a top high hurdler. . . .Selected to play Jan. 3 in San Antonio in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl (NBC10).
What he says: "Every quarterback wants to come in and be able to challenge someone for the spot, so I want to learn from Daryll Clark for a year, and by the time I'm a sophomore, be ready to take control of the Penn State offense."
To see his highlight video,
The oral commitment by Kevin Newsome fills a tremendous void in Penn State's depth chart at quarterback after the announcement that backup QB Pat Devlin will transfer. Here's a look at Penn State's oral commitments. The signing date for national letters of intent is Feb. 4.
Chatham, Va. 6-3 217 4.57 Dec. 16
S Gerald Hodges Paulsboro 6-3 220 4.55 Dec. 12
TE Gary Gilliam Hershey 6-7 245 4.80 Nov. 13
K Anthony Fera Houston 6-2 230 ------ Oct. 22
WR Devon Smith Waldorf, Md. 5-7 145 4.34 Oct. 1
LB Glenn Carson Manahawkin 6-3 220 4.60 Sep. 29
OT Nate Cadogan Portsmouth, Ohio 6-6 250 5.00 July 7
WR Christian Kuntz Camp Hill 6-4 190 4.46 July 4
RB Curtis Dukes Philadelphia 6-2 235 4.50 July 2
OT Adam Gress West Mifflin 6-7 290 5.22 July 2
CB Curtis Drake West Catholic 6-0 170 4.68 Jun. 11
DT Sean Stanley Gaithersburg, Md.6-1 247 4.81 May 27
WR Brandon Felder Oxon Hill, Md. 6-3 165 4.50 May 27
CB Stephon Morris Greenbelt, Md. 5-9 175 4.40 May 26
OT Eric Shrive Scranton 6-7 300 5.10 May 15
OG Frank Figueroa Alexandria, Va. 6-4 275 ------ May 15
CB Derrick Thomas Greenbelt, Md. 6-0 173 4.48 May 12
CB Darrell Givens Indian Head, Md. 6-1 178 4.50 May 10
S Stephen Obeng-Agyapong N.Y. 5-11 185 4.50 May 9
OT Mark Arcidiacono St. Joe's Prep 6-5 285 ------ Apr. 30
S Malcolm Willis Indian Head, Md. 6-1 185 4.65 Apr. 29
C Ty Howle Bunn, N.C. 6-2 290 5.40 Mar. 23