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Blue chip in-state WR enrolls with Penn State football

Now officially a Nittany Lion, Penn State football may soon be getting help in the passing game from one of the top wide receivers in the state from the 2024 cycle.

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Penn State football, Peter Gonzalez, 2024 recruiting
Oct 19, 2019; University Park, PA, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions wide receiver KJ Hamler (1) catches a pass for a touchdown against the Michigan Wolverines during the second quarter at Beaver Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

The newest wave of 2024 signees officially became part of the Penn State football program last weekend, including one at a position of need for James Franklin and the Nittany Lions. On Sunday, Pittsburgh Central Catholic wide receiver Peter Gonzalez became one of four members of the 2024 recruiting class to enroll at Penn State for the summer. Budding as a prospect on the field during his senior year, can Gonzalez become a serious contributor for the Nittany Lions this fall?

Four-star in-state wide receiver Peter Gonzalez enrolls for summer

The final of three wide receivers to commit to Penn State football in a week last June, Peter Gonzalez may have been a little overshadowed by his counterparts Josiah Brown and Tyseer Denmark heading into last fall.

However, Gonzalez put that discussion to bed with an outstanding senior year. The son of former Pitt and Steelers QB Pete Gonzalez, Peter Gonzalez had 47 catches for 1,081 yards and 12 touchdowns last season.

That was enough to elevate Gonzalez to a four-star prospect in On3’s 2024 recruiting class rankings. When the Pittsburgh Central Catholic product put pen to paper last December, he was the second-ranked wide receiver in Pennsylvania and the No. 8 recruit in the state.

And now, Peter Gonzalez is officially a Nittany Lion. Gonzalez was one of four signees from the 2024 recruiting cycle who joined the Penn State football program on Sunday. Others included top in-state edge rusher Mylachi Williams, three-star offensive lineman Caleb Brewer, and Pittsburgh Central Catholic teammate and linebacker Anthony Speca.

Could the freshman wide receiver make an impact this fall?

It’s no secret that Penn State football has been searching for wide receivers to separate themselves from the pack. The Nittany Lions have brought in plenty of receivers with talent in recent years; the issue has been getting that talent to produce consistently.

But, the herd out wide did thin slightly with the departure of four pass catchers following spring practices. There are still plenty of bodies that will be ahead of Peter Gonzalez when fall camp starts, but that doesn’t mean he can’t carve out a role for himself in his first year on campus.

Penn State has lacked a consistent deep threat in the passing game for several years now. This is something that Gonzalez has shown he can do, especially during his senior season. The Nittany Lions will look to become much more explosive offensively under new coordinator Andy Kotelnicki. Kotelnicki could look to a potential deep threat like Gonzalez to counterbalance the short and intermediate passing game that Drew Allar had success with in 2023.

While he doesn’t need to be an every-down contributor as a true freshman, Peter Gonzalez could help to add a much-needed element to the offense in 2024.



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Matt is a co-owner and Editor in Chief of Basic Blues Nation. Launched in 2022, Basic Blues Nation is one of the fastest-growing websites covering all Penn State athletics, with over 3.5 million readers in 2023. Matt is also a credentialed member of the Penn State football beat, and is a member of the Football Writers Association of America.

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