The rebuilding process is looking promising for new Penn State Nittany Lions head coach James Franklin.
Barkley, a 5'11", 190-pound Whitehall, Pa., native, was previously committed to Rutgers but pulled the trigger for PSU Wednesday. After his flip was announced, he thanked the Scarlet Knights' coaching staff on Twitter.
Barkley has a good blend of size and speed and, with development, could become an excellent back at the next level. His highlights can be found on Hudl.
The Nittany Lions have four commitments in their 2015 class. Barkley and Bates are joined by 4-star athlete Kamonte Carter and 2-star safety Jarvis Miller. The young class ranks No. 17 nationally and No. 2 in the Big Ten.
Miller took to Twitter to welcome Barkley to the class.
The Nittany Lions will have some openings in their backfield going forward. PSU's top two running backs from 2013, Zach Zwinak and Bill Belton, are seniors, and the only other serious contributor at running back last year, Akeel Lynch, is a junior.
The trio combined for 2,150 rushing yards and 18 touchdowns last year. The Nittany Lions finished seventh in the Big Ten, averaging 174 rushing yards per game.