Penn State Football

Four-star linebacker Ellis Brooks commits to Penn State

Lose one ‘backer, gain another.

Four-star inside linebacker Ellis Brooks verbally committed to Penn State via Twitter on Monday afternoon. Brooks, ranked No. 6 nationally at his position by, is the 19th member of the Nittany Lions’ 2017 class, which will become official on Wednesday’s National Signing Day.

“I would like to thank my Lord and Savior for the opportunity to play at a place that has been my dream school for as long as I can remember,” Brooks said in a tweeted statement.

Brooks chose Penn State over Maryland, Duke, Notre Dame, LSU and Oregon.

The verbal commitment comes one week after four-star linebacker Dylan Rivers, who pledged to the Nittany Lions in Nov. 2015, flipped his decision to Virginia Tech.

Penn State didn’t wait long to move on from the Virginia native. Just before Rivers’ announcement, Brooks tweeted that he was offered a scholarship by the Nittany Lions.

At the time, Maryland appeared to be the runaway favorite to land him. But after an official visit to Penn State this past weekend, 247 Sports’ Crystal Ball Predictions moved in favor of James Franklin and company, backing Penn State with a 71 percent clip.

Brooks is the second linebacker of the Nittany Lions’ 2017 class, joining Brelin Faison-Walden, a three-star early enrollee.

With Brooks’ pledge, assuming there are no decommitments from now until National Signing Day, Penn State has a couple of spots to work with. Franklin and his staff are eyeing a class of 20 or 21 players.

John McGonigal: 814-231-4630, @jmcgonigal9