UNIVERSITY PARK — Penn State’s 2010 recruiting class boasted intriguing measurables.
Twelve four-star recruits. Two 6-foot-3 quarterbacks. Nine Pennsylvania standouts. Eleven players from surrounding states.
The initial version of the class featured 20 players who signed National Letters of Intent on Feb. 4, 2010. The current version includes nine players participating in Penn State’s preseason camp.
Defections are a major part of recruiting. But the recent roster purge caused by the NCAA sanctions has stripped a class Rivals.com ranked first in the Big Ten and 12th nationally of some significant pieces.
Here’s a where-are-they-now involving a recruiting class that should have been entering its prime this fall.
Brad Bars, Nashville, Tenn. — The only player to receive a two-star rating, the 6-foot-3, 254-pound Bars remains with the Nittany Lions. He made a big impact on special teams last season, blocking a punt to spark a 10-7 victory over Illinois. Bars entered camp competing for a backup spot behind Sean Stanley at left defensive end.
Kyle Baublitz, York — Another defensive lineman who stuck with the program. The 6-foot-5, 287-pound Baublitz shifted from end to tackle after spring drills. He’s expected to enter the season as All-Big Ten candidate Jordan Hill’s top backup at defensive tackle.
Rob Bolden, Orchard Lake, Mich. — Trying to recharge after opening the past two seasons as the Nittany Lions’ starting quarterback. He provided plenty of drama in his two years at Penn State, threatening to transfer after the 2010 season and bolting for LSU less than a week after the NCAA sanctions were announced. Threw seven touchdowns and 14 interceptions in 20 games.
Miles Dieffenbach, Pittsburgh — The son of Pitt’s tennis coach, Dieffenbach has flourished on and off the field at Penn State and will likely open this season as the starting left guard.
The 6-foot-3, 300-pound sophomore has the pedigree and skills to become a multi-year stalwart on the line.
Khairi Fortt, Stamford, Conn. — His potential-filled career will likely end at California, where he’s competing for a starting spot. Fortt has two years of eligibility remaining after appearing in 23 games in two seasons with the Nittany Lions.
Luke Graham, Harrison City — Left the team earlier this week, becoming the 11th member of the class to depart. Graham, who entered camp as the third-team left tackle, remains enrolled in classes at Penn State.
Evan Hailes, Chesapeake, Va. — Serious blood clots forced Hailes to end his career this past spring. He will stay at Penn State and help the football program in a volunteer coaching capacity.
Kevin Haplea, Annandale, N.J. — After catching three passes last season, Haplea seemed primed to occupy a big spot in a Penn State offense emphasizing tight ends as receiving threats. But multiple players, including freshmen Kyle Carter and Jesse James, passed Haplea on the depth chart. Haplea transferred to Florida State earlier this month.
Mike Hull, Canonsburg — A big grab in 2010, the 6-foot, 228-pound Hull is bracing for future stardom. He’s stuck behind seniors Gerald Hodges and Michael Mauti at outside linebacker. Hull, the son of former Penn State and NFL linebacker Tom Hull, should play more this season. Keeping Hull around for 2013 and ’14 will help a program encountering recruiting setbacks at linebacker.
DaQuan Jones, Johnson City, N.Y. —Jones worked his way into defensive line coach Larry John-son’s rotation the past two years and he’s the leading candidate to step into All- American Devon Still’s tackle spot this season. At 324 pounds, Jones is the heaviest player on the current roster. He possess good mobility for his size.
Paul Jones, McKees Rocks — The 6-foot-3, 258-pound sophomore should play this season after missing the past two years for academic reasons. He’s the No. 2 quarterback behind senior Matt McGloin but flashes the strong arm that transformed him into a top-10 quarterback recruit in 2010. With Bolden gone, Jones, a four-star recruit, could be the quarterback of the future.
Alex Kenney, State College — Devon Smith’s decision to leave the team for personal reasons means Kenney will likely begin the season as Penn State’s slot receiver. The fastest member of the recruiting class, Kenney played wide receiver and defensive back the past two seasons. He has strong Penn State ties. His sister, Lauren, is a star javelin thrower on the track team, and his father, Larry, is a professor of physiology and kinesiology.
Khamrone Kolb, Burke, Va. — Never a threat to earn substantial playing time on the offensive line, Kolb left the team earlier this summer. He has resurfaced at Division I-AA Fordham, where he’s competing for one of two open starting spots on the offensive line.
Levi Norwood, Waco, Texas — Norwood left the class in 2010 to join his father, Brian, at Baylor. Brian coached Penn State’s safeties from 2001-07 and he’s now the Bears’ associate head coach. Levi is a multi-tasker, catching passes, returning punts and even playing basketball at Baylor. Only a sophomore, he’s trying to break preseason camp as a starting wide receiver. Had his athletic family stayed in State College, Levi would have played alongside Kenney on a State College football team that reached the 2009 PIAA Class AAAA final.
C.J. Olaniyan, Warren, Mich. — Joins Bars, Baublitz and Jones to give the Nittany Lions defensive line options. The 6-foot-3, 248-pound Olaniyan appeared in six games and had three tackles in 2011. Look for both numbers to swell this season as he competes with Bars for playing time behind Stanley.
Shyquawn Pullium, Erie — The defensive back recruit tried taking the prep school route to Penn State but never made it to campus after a year at Kiski Prep. He’s now in his second year as a wide receiver at Blinn (Texas) College.
Silas Redd, Stamford, Conn. — The best player to leave the Nittany Lions since the NCAA sanctions were announced, Redd took his 1,200 rushing yards and NFL ambitions to Southern California. Now it’s time to learn if he fits into the Trojans’ potent offense.
Dakota Royer, Manheim — The four-star recruit left the team last week and plans on earning his Penn State degree in May. Royer started his career on defense and moved to tight end before the start of spring drills. He entered the summer behind Carter and Haplea at ‘F’ tight end.
Tom Ricketts, Wexford — The 6-foot-5, 275-pound Ricketts transferred to Pitt after redshirting at Penn State in 2010. NCAA transfer rules prohibited him from playing last season. A shoulder injury suffered on the first day of preseason camp will force him to miss this season.
Zach Zwinak, Frederick, Md. — Searching for a role in new coach Bill O’Brien’s offense. The 6- foot-1, 232-pound Zwinak is the top fullback behind senior Michael Zordich. He appeared in two games last season after suffering a torn ACL midway through 2010.
Guy Cipriano can be reached at 231-4643. Follow him on Twitter @cdtguy