football Edit

After Penn State Official, 4-Star WR Josh Downs has Decisions to Make

ATLANTA - For years, Rivals 4-star wide receiver Josh Downs said he has been intrigued by Penn State football.

Last weekend, the North Carolina verbal commitment took an official visit to the Nittany Lions’ campus to learn more about that longtime fascination. Now in Atlanta for the Rivals 5-Star Challenge, the Class of 2020 prospect offered his impressions of the visit.

“Penn State has always been a dream school of mine,” said Downs. “I’ve just been chopping it up with the coaches and I took my OV last weekend. It was a great experience. It was a really nice visit to Pennsylvania. State College is a great place, so I definitely enjoyed it.”

Downs spent his visit meeting with current Penn State players including wide receivers John Dunmore and T.J. Jones, plus freshman defensive tackle D’von Ellies, as well as others. He also spent time with the Penn State coaching staff, including assistant position coach Gerad Parker, who he came away impressed by.

“It was great. Coach Parker, the new receivers coach, we sat down and I was highly impressed with what he had to offer and how he’ll elevate my game,” said Downs. “And Coach Franklin, he’s a character, he’s a great dude. He was upbeat, he was chilling. My parents loved him. The facilities were great, the whole area was great. And it’s the biggest alumni in the nation, so that’s big too.”

Noting that his parents had been particularly impressed by Franklin, having spent time at the head coach’s house on the official visit, Downs came away from the visit admittedly still highly interested in Penn State.

“I’d be lying if I said that Penn State is not a school that I’m looking at,” said Downs. “I’m committed to North Carolina right now… but I’m thinking right now. It’s Penn State or North Carolina.”

Downs intends to still take two more visits to Penn State, including the White Out game scheduled when the Nittany Lions host Michigan on Oct. 19, as well as for the opener against Idaho on Aug. 31 at Beaver Stadium.

(Editor's note: A previous version of this story read that Downs indicated said he'd be making a final decision in the next two to three weeks. Downs clarified on Twitter later that he had no timetable.)