What started out as a promising day in Happy Valley turned dismal yesterday when the nation's No. 1 prep football player, Terrelle Pryor, laid the knockout punch on the Nittany Lions as he announced his decision to attend Ohio State University.
While Pryor said his runner-up was the University of Michigan, it didn't create any less disappointment to the students and fans of Penn State.
Six weeks ago, Pryor announced he would once again visit Penn State, this time on an official visit. However, Pryor never made the trip.
Craig Pryor, Terrelle's dad, expressed great interest in Penn State, forming a friendly relationship with head coach Joe Paterno. Pryor comes from Jeanette, PA, and would have been closer to his father at Penn State than Ohio State, Michigan, or his fourth choice, Oregon.
Pryor's reason for not attending Penn State was its country setting.
"It's a country-looking type of thing," he said. "I just don't like that place."
A common belief was that Pryor was leaning towards Ohio State for its ability to change its offense to his style. Penn State representatives said this was not the case and they would move from the pro-style offense they ran with senior quarterback Anthony Morelli and switch to an offense similar to the one they ran with Michael Robinson
This, however, was not enough to convince Pryor, and he will now most likely sit behind senior quarterback Todd Boeckman for the Buckeyes next year.
The Nittany Lions will move on now that Pryor is lost. His reserved scholarship will be given to a current commitment. Entering a season where Pryor could have competed for a starting job, the Lions will begin spring practices with a competition between senior-to-be Daryll Clark, and sophomore-to-be Pat Devlin.
While Devlin seems to fit the current Penn State offense best, Paterno's loyalty to seniors and last year's depth chart would give Daryll Clark the edge. One thing is certain: The Nittany Lions and their fans are eager to get back into the national title hunt.
While Lions are notorious carnivores, one can only believe that they might grow an appetite for a certain Buckeye on Oct. 25, in Columbus, Ohio.