Penn State Football

4-star DE announces commitment to Penn State football over Ohio State

Four-star defensive end Jayson Oweh publicly announced his commitment to Penn State on Thursday night — but, the university revealed, he’s actually been silently signed for about two weeks.

With ESPN’s cameras directed on him Thursday, Oweh donned a Nittany Lions hat between the third and fourth quarters of the Under Armour All-America Game in Orlando, Fla. But, according to a Penn State spokesperson, Oweh already faxed in his National Letter of Intent during the early signing period two weeks ago.

“It’s just family,” Oweh told ESPN, explaining his choice. “I felt like it’s the right thing to do.

“And we’re going to win it all next year.”

Oweh — the No. 3 player in The Garden State, No. 5 strong-side defensive end in the class and No. 106 prospect overall, according to 247 Sports — was expected to choose the Nittany Lions over Ohio State. An overwhelming 22 of 23 votes on 247 Sports’ Crystal Ball predictions had the 6-foot-5, 236-pounder picking Penn State over the Buckeyes, Alabama, Georgia, Michigan, Miami, Notre Dame and more blue bloods.

Even though it wasn’t a shocker, and it happened two weeks ago, securing Oweh’s commitment is big for the Nittany Lions.

James Franklin said on Dec. 20 that the class still had a “major need” at defensive end. Micah Parsons is, at least initially, moving from a pass rusher to middle linebacker, and Judge Culpepper projects as an interior lineman.

The Nittany Lions should still have a couple spots in the class available, and they’re favorites to land four-star offensive tackle Rasheed Walker and four-star wide receiver — and Penn State legacy — Solomon Enis. Those announcements will come later in the month or at the start of February.

In the meantime, though, Franklin, defensive line coach Sean Spencer and the coaching staff are undoubtedly pleased with the addition of Oweh.

John McGonigal: 814-231-4630, @jmcgonigal9