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Penn State football recruiting: Nittany Lions offer trio of rising Tennessee defenders

The Penn State Nittany Lions are targeting a trio of rising defenders from SEC country.



Penn State football recruiting, Marcus Goree, Tennessee, Shavar Young, Chaston Smith
Sep 11, 2021; University Park, Pennsylvania, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions head coach James Franklin stands on the field during a warm up prior to the game against the Ball State Cardinals at Beaver Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew OHaren-USA TODAY Sports

Yesterday, Penn State football recruiting and head coach James Franklin made some significant offers in hopes of bolstering his recruiting classes for 2024 and 2026. Among the offers that were extended, three Tennessee-based defensive backs caught the attention of Penn State recruiters. Chaston Smith, Marcus Goree, and Shavar Young are the names to watch as James Franklin seeks to tap into a former SEC pipeline to secure these talented players for the team.

Penn State football recruiting offers three Tennessee defenders

Yesterday, the Penn State football recruiting team added three new targets to their big board, all hailing from the SEC territory of Tennessee. Among the recruits are a pair of teammates from Webb School of Knoxville in the 2026 recruiting class and a highly-touted industry four-star cornerback from Cleveland, TN in the 2024 class.

Nittany Lions target rising four-star cornerback in 2024 recruiting class

Marcus Goree is a standout defensive back standing at 6-foot-1 and weighing 170 pounds. He currently attends Bradley Central High School in Cleveland, TN, where he has been making waves on the football field. According to On3 Industry Rankings, Goree is a highly-regarded four-star cornerback and is considered one of the top players in the state. He is currently ranked as the No. 266 overall recruit in the 2024 class, the No. 26 cornerback in the class, and the No. 7 recruit in Tennessee. The 247 Sports composite rankings also recognize Goree as a four-star athlete, ranking him as the No. 38 ATH in the class and the No. 10 recruit in Tennessee. Notably, Goree is already committed to the University of Tennessee.

New offers for a pair of 2026 defenders

In addition to Marcus Goree, the highly-regarded 2024 recruit, Penn State football recruiting has its sights set on a pair of talented teammates from Webb School of Knoxville in the 2026 recruiting class. Chaston Smith and Shavar Young, both currently attending Webb School of Knoxville in Knoxville, TN, were both offered scholarships by Penn State on Friday.

While they are not yet ranked since they belong to the 2026 class which is yet to be evaluated, both Smith and Young have already caught the attention of several Big Ten programs such as the University of Michigan, as well as several SEC powerhouses like Tennessee and Florida. Despite their young age, they are both considered to be promising prospects and are being closely watched by recruiting analysts across the nation — both Shavar Young and Chaston Smith will likely grow into top-tier prospects in the coming classes.

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