On this week’s edition of “Five Questions,” we caught up with 2018 Penn State commit Pat Freiermuth — a four-star prospect and the No. 8 tight end in the country, per 247 Sports.
Freiermuth, the No. 1 player in Massachusetts, is a 6-foot-5 nightmare for opposing secondaries, and he’s excited to bring that prowess to Happy Valley.
Q: So, Pat, you committed to Penn State last August and — at the time — Penn State was probably the biggest program that had offered you. Since then, it looks like you’ve received offers from Notre Dame and Ohio State in February and May, respectively. How strong is your verbal to the Nittany Lions?
A: My verbal is as strong as it could be. I chose Penn State because I really enjoy the school, and I chose to commit because I couldn’t see myself playing anywhere else. My commitment is strong. Me and Coach (James) Franklin and Coach (Ricky) Rahne have built a really good relationship, so I couldn’t do that to them. I’m staying committed.
Q: The offense that Penn State is running now, how much did that play into why you want to be a part of the program? You watch a guy like Mike Gesicki tear it up like he did last year, and figure, ‘Hey, that could be me in a couple years or so’?
A: Yeah, that’s a huge factor. You heard all the hype prior to Coach (Joe) Moorhead getting there with this new offense. When I visited, I saw it in training camp, and I saw how explosive it could be. And then during the season it showed that they love to use all their targets. It’s just awesome to know I’ll be a part of the offense one day.
Q: There seems to be a little trend growing. There are two Massachusetts natives — tight end Danny Dalton and linebacker Johnathan Thomas — already on the team, and now you will be joining them next year. What kind of pride do you and those guys take in representing New England?
A: Speaking for myself, I take a lot of pride in that, and I’m sure they do too. There’s not a lot of prospects that come from Massachusetts. Whenever a prospect has the opportunity to put on for their state and get the recognition, it means a lot. Personally, I intend to represent that and prove to people that we have pretty good football players in Massachusetts.
Q: I saw that last June you attended a camp at UMass, right in your backyard. Did you happen to run into Adam Breneman at all?
A: I did not, but my uncle is actually the offensive line coach at UMass. He knows Adam Breneman, so I’ve talked to him here and there. ...We don’t really talk about football at all. We just got to know each other.
Q: Now I’m sure you’re a big Celtics fan, so we’ll end on a fun one. Is it a no-brainer with drafting Markelle Fultz at No. 1? I’m from Philly, so I’m secretly hoping Boston trades the Sixers the first pick. But that probably won’t happen.
A: (laughs) I’d love for the Celtics to get him with the first overall pick. Him and Isaiah (Thomas) in the backcourt would just be unreal. I wouldn’t mind trading the pick to someone either, and then maybe get Gordon Hayward for the backcourt. We’ll see.