Penn State beats out Alabama, Notre Dame, others for one of Baltimore's top recruits

Penn State

One of the Baltimore area’s top football recruits has made his college decision.

McDonogh’s Dani Dennis-Sutton, a four-star defensive end in the Class of 2022, announced his commitment to Penn State on Thursday evening at a news conference at the Owings Mills private school.

The 6-foot-5, 250-pound lineman is one of the most sought-after recruits in the country, receiving scholarship offers from national powers such as Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Notre Dame, Oklahoma and several other Power Five programs. He is the 50th-best player in the country and the top recruit in Maryland, according to the 247 Sports Composite rankings. He’s rated a five-star prospect and the No. 11 overall player in the Class of 2022 by Rivals.

The Eagles star made official visits to Georgia ( June 4), Penn State ( June 11) and Alabama ( June 18) this summer before making his final decision.

“Doing the Zoom and the FaceTime stuff, you could only do so much. Meeting everyone in person was really cool,” he told 247 Sports before his announcement. “Meeting the coaches’ families was really cool. With COVID, I couldn’t do anything, so going to the schools was great for me.”

Dennis-Sutton had two sacks, 29 tackles, 10 tackles for loss and a fumble recovery in 10 games in the 2019 season, but did not play in 2020 as the coronavirus pandemic forced several Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association teams to opt out. He was a late arrival to football having played basketball for much of his youth, including this past season for McDonogh.

“This will be Dani’s third year playing organized football ever,” Eagles coach Hakeem Sule told The Baltimore Sun last year. “So, you’re taking an athlete and a guy who’s really a basketball player and teaching him the defensive end position. If you look at his film, what you’re seeing is a progression in the last two years of him mastering his craft and learning how to play. A guy with his size and relentless effort to get to the ball, that presents a lot of problems for opposing teams.”