James Franklin and the Nittany Lions' momentum on the recruiting trail continued Friday.
Hakeem Beamon — a four-star defensive end and the No. 235 player in the country, per 247 Sports — joined the Nittany Lions' budding 2019 recruiting class. The 6-foot-4, 254-pound pass-rusher is the ninth member of the class and sixth prospect to pick Penn State since May 18.
Beamon, who was primarily recruited by Sean Spencer, is the fourth top-300 prospect to commit to Penn State, per 247 Sports. He is the No. 17 defensive end in the nation and the Nittany Lions' first defensive lineman this cycle.
Beamon's commitment was expected. All 14 experts on 247 Sports' Crystal Ball Predictions picked Penn State as the favorites. Beamon chose the Nittany Lions over the likes of Alabama, Ohio State, Virginia Tech, South Carolina and North Carolina.
In a down recruiting year in Pennsylvania — 247 Sports lists just one prospect from the Keystone State as four-star caliber — Penn State has dominated the state of Virginia. Beamon, a Lloyd C. Bird product, is the No. 7 player in Old Dominion. At Penn State, he will link up with five-star linebacker Brandon Smith and four-star running back Devyn Ford, the first- and second-ranked players in Virginia, respectively.
No other program in the country has nabbed three of the top-seven prospects in a different state. Alabama has three of the top-seven prospects in Alabama; same case with Iowa and Minnesota in their respective states. But the way the Nittany Lions have plundered Virginia hasn't been done this cycle.
And Franklin might not be finished, either. Four-star athlete Cam'Ron Kelly, the No. 4 prospect in Virginia, is announcing his decision on June 7 — and 79 percent of 247 Sports' Crystal Ball Predictions are in favor of Penn State.
With Beamon's commitment in the bag — and maybe another coming next week — the arrow is pointing up for Penn State.