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Penn State football recruiting: Jim Harbaugh making a play for top PSU commit

The Michigan Wolverines are officially in pursuit of the top commit in the 2025 Penn State football recruiting class.



Penn State football recruiting, Michigan Wolverines
Nov 18, 2017; University Park, PA, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions offensive linesmen Chasz Wright (77) stands at the line of scrimmage during the second quarter against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Beaver Stadium. Penn State defeated Nebraska 56-44. Mandatory Credit: Matthew O'Haren-USA TODAY Sports

The Penn State football recruiting efforts have been highly successful, with two of the best recruiting classes in the nation. The 2024 class currently ranks in the top-6 in the country, while the 2025 class is in the top-3. However, today brought some frustrating yet unsurprising news for Nittany Lions fans: Jim Harbaugh, head coach of Michigan football, has set his sights on Jaelyn Matthews, the top-ranked Penn State football commit in the 2025 recruiting class. The Nittany Lions are now being tasked with fending off the Michigan Wolverines on the recruiting trail.

Jim Harbaugh’s Michigan Wolverines targeting top-ranked Penn State football recruiting commit

Matthews is a regional target and has been committed to Penn State football for some time. However, the pursuit by another major Big Ten program is always a cause for concern for both fans and coaches alike. This development highlights the intense competition between the top-tier Big Ten East programs for the best recruits in the region, and how even committed players can become targets for rival teams.

The recruiting landscape in college football is highly competitive, with coaches and programs using a variety of tactics to secure the best possible talent for their teams. The fact that the Michigan Wolverines are targeting one of Penn State’s top recruits is a testament to the level of talent Matthews possesses, and the importance of securing top recruits for the success of a program. It remains to be seen whether Matthews will stay committed to Penn State or be persuaded to switch to Michigan, but it is clear that the Nittany Lions will need to work hard to keep their top prospects committed to their program.

Matthews must be a priority for James Franklin and his Nittany Lions

Jaelyne Matthews, the top-ranked football recruit in New Jersey and a major commit for Penn State, has become a person of national interest in the world of college football recruiting. Although Matthews officially committed to the Nittany Lions a few months ago, as a 2025 recruit, there is still time before he signs and makes his commitment official with James Franklin and his staff. Despite the Michigan Wolverines’ pursuit of Matthews, Penn State has nothing to worry about at this time, as recruiting is a fluid process and coaches regularly offer numerous players across the nation.

However, it is crucial for the Nittany Lions to maintain Matthews’ commitment in the 2025 class. According to the 247 Sports composite rankings, Matthews is a major four-star recruit and is ranked among the top 60 recruits nationally, the top 10 offensive tackles in his class, and the No. 1 recruit in New Jersey. His talent and physical attributes make him an ideal Penn State football recruiting target, and his commitment was a significant victory for the Nittany Lions’ 2025 recruiting class.

While Michigan football is pursuing Matthews, James Franklin appears to have everything under control for now. However, college football recruiting can be unpredictable, and Penn State must continue to prioritize Matthews and other top recruits to ensure the continued success of its program.

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Chris Mangum is currently a Penn State student and serves as a writer and editor covering Big Ten athletics. He has served as a beat writer, online reporter, print reporter, and more over the past few years of his career. He currently serves as the managing editor for Basic Blues Nation and others.