La Salle’s Abdul Carter chooses Penn State
By Joseph Santoliquito
It could not have been more binding than the way La Salle’s Abdul Carter made his commitment to Penn State on Saturday.
The 6-foot-4, 235-pound senior-to-be linebacker was invited to Penn State’s summer camp, along with numerous other commits and Nittany Lions recruits over the weekend. The Nittany Lions’ Lasch Bash, which is a social gathering that’s essentially a huge barbeque, was when Carter took the time to walk up to Penn State coach James Franklin, shake his hand and tell his future coach to his face that he will accept his offer to go to Penn State.
Carter chose Penn State over South Carolina, which has made serious inroads in the Southeastern Pennsylvania, and Old Miss.
“Just this past week, me and my dad sat down and looked at Penn State, Old Miss and South Carolina,” Carter said. “We felt Penn State was my best choice to come in and have my biggest impact of the three teams. I think Penn State sees me as a linebacker, but when I was up there during camp, they said they liked how I rushed the quarterback, so I could be a (stand-up) defensive end or a linebacker.
“South Carolina was a close second, and Old Miss was right there, too. The two schools were pretty equal to me. I also liked my class and the guys I’m with. I have Dani Dennis-Sutton, Ken Talley and Keon Wylie in front of me. I was with Ken Talley and Wylie while we were all at Penn State on Saturday.
“It was big to me that there are Philly guys coming up (to Penn State) with me. These are guys like me, that come from where I come from and we have a lot in common. We come from the same environment and have seen the same stuff. That had a big influence on my decision.”
More importantly, Carter feels settled and relaxed entering his senior year. La Salle is going to be very good, with the return of Carter and the Explorers’ Rutgers-bound power back Sam Brown.
“I feel really settled,” Carter said. “That’s all I spoke about this last week. I want to help the first African-American coach win a major national championship. I have a lot to still do at La Salle. This senior class has never beaten (St. Joe’s) Prep. We never won a state title.
“We’re more than battle-tested to win. We have Bishop McDevitt (Harrisburg), we’ll have Imhotep and Malvern Prep. Then, we have Prep on October 2 at Franklin Field.”
Carter will switch to wear No. 11 at Penn State, in tradition of other great linebackers that played at Penn State.
With NFL linebacker size already, Carter appears to have a good future ahead—and his outlook will get brighter.
Carter is hoping he may soon be joined by another Philadelphia-area standout who was up with him last weekend in State College—Prep star linebacker Josiah Trotter, the son of former Eagles’ Pro Bowl linebacker Jeremiah Trotter who has Penn State in his final four with Ohio State, South Carolina and Clemson, where his older brother, Jeremiah Jr., is about to enter his freshman year.
Joseph Santoliquito is an award-winning sportswriter who has been covering high school football since 1992 and is the president of the Boxing Writers Association of America. He can be followed on twitter @JSantoliquito. Follow EasternPAFootball.com on Twitter @EPAFootball.
Follow EasternPAFootball.com on Twitter @EPAFootball
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