Growing up in Ashtabula, Ohio, Fredrick Scruggs' dream was to play for Ohio State.
After being impressed by the care and attention Penn State paid him during the recruiting process, Scruggs, a senior at Erie Cathedral Prep, decided to commit to the Nittany Lions on Friday, Aug. 4.
"It felt like home every time I went down there," Scruggs said. "The coaches really treated me like family, and they reached out a lot. That's a big deal to me."
Scruggs, a 6-foot 3-inch, 273-pound all-state lineman, was courted by several major Division I programs, including Michigan State, LSU, UCLA, Michigan and Syracuse, but it came down to two schools.
"It was very tough to say no to Ohio State," said Scruggs, who called Urban Meyer personally to let him know about his decision. "Urban is a legend in my hometown, and Ohio State was my dream school. It was one of the hardest decisions of my life."
Scruggs was told he would play on the interior line, either at guard or at center, for coach James Franklin. He is a standout left tackle for the Ramblers, and he had 11½ tackles for a loss on defense as a junior.
"Penn State walked in here between his freshman and sophomore years and was impressed by his work in the weight room," Prep coach Mike Mischler said. "Then he had a big sophomore year on the varsity level which really had schools interested in him. He's a talented young man and outstanding kid. Penn State landed a great recruit."
After years of Penn State not signing many recruits from District 10, the Nittany Lions have picked up Journey Brown from Meadville, Jesse Luketa from Mercyhurst Prep and now Scruggs.
"College recruiting is never-ending with 20 kids that want to play at the next level," Mischler said. "As a staff, we are always working hard to get guys opportunities. Each time you are able to get a guy committed, it's a big thing for the program."
Scruggs is one of several Division I commits for the Ramblers, who open the season in three weeks.
"It was overwhelming at times, but I had to stay focused and go over my options," Scruggs said. "I'm just relieved it's settled."