UNIVERSITY PARK — Two Penn State football recruits announced their verbal commitments to the Nittany Lions within eight hours of each other Saturday.
The commitments are thought to be a direct result of Penn State's "Lasch Bash," an annual event originally started by former head coach Bill O'Brien that brings several prospects to the Lasch Building at University Park for an unofficial visit, backyard barbecue style.
It's the biggest recruiting day of the year for the program, and it paid off on Saturday as both Cameron Brown and Shaka Toney announced their verbal commitments.
Brown was first to announce. The 6-foot-5, 210-pound linebacker from Maryland is considered a four-star recruit and became the 17th member of the 2016 class. He also is the first linebacker commit of the class, though his size could indicate a switch to defensive end.
Just hours after Brown committed, Toney made his commitment public. According to 247sports.com, Toney, who plays for Imhotep Charter in Philadelphia, had committed a few weeks ago but held off making an announcement until the day of the Lasch Bash.
The 6-foot-3, 219-pound outside linebacker is considered a three-star prospect and had offers from Duke, Pittsburgh, North Carolina, Rutgers, Temple, Vanderbilt and West Virginia. He became the 18th member of the 2016 class and the second linebacker. He is also the fourth in-state member of the class.
Toney is also a hybrid player who could switch to a defensive end, given his size and growth potential.
Penn State's recruiting class of 2016 has not been ranked lower than No. 10 in the nation by ESPN. It is currently ranked at No. 8 in the nation by Rivals and at No. 6 by 247Sports/CBS Sports, and contains nine four-star players and nine three-star players.
The Nittany Lions currently have 13 scholarships available for 2016.