2018 Rivals100 wide receiver Joseph Scates, a four-star standout from Dayton (Ohio) Dunbar, is "loving" Pitt right now and says he hopes to visit in the near future. Check out Scates' thoughts on Pitt and the rest of his recruitment.
BEREA, Ohio -- Since backing off of an early commitment to Michigan State, Rivals100 wide receiver and ultra-athletic standout Joseph Scates of Dayton (Ohio) Dunbar has seemingly had the world at his feet in recruiting. New offers have come in from the likes of Arkansas, Minnesota, and Alabama in recent weeks and the 6-foot-3, 180-pound Scates has found himself living a dream.
“I just got an Arkansas offer last night and it really feels like I’ve been picking up offers left and right. It’s really a blessing. It feels so good,” Scates said. “I never saw myself even playing high school football to be honest, I just didn’t think I’d be playing sports like that.”
Power Five schools have been on the warpath in western Ohio to recruit Scates now that his recruitment has re-opened, including a host of four schools that have been particularly involved with the star from Dayton.
“I want to visit Pitt and then I want to get back up to Bama again. I want to get to Rutgers and Penn State too,” Scates explained. “There are maybe a couple others, but I’ll update on Twitter or something like that soon.”
The most common names referenced in Scates’ recruitment have been programs like Alabama (which he described as a “dream school”), Michigan State, and Ohio State, but Pitt has flown under the radar. That’s not at all indicative of his interest in the school, as Scates told Panther-Lair.com that he’s very high on what Pitt could offer him as a program.
“Pitt has been recruiting me very hard and showing a lot of love and a lot of attention. They’ve put in a lot of time into recruiting me and I’m loving them and loving them back,” Scates said. “I [direct message] with them on Twitter every day.”
In fact, Pitt has been in contact with Scates for months, dating well back into the fall. Although he hasn’t been able to visit yet, the Panthers’ momentum in his recruitment could soon lead to a visit. His cousin Raveion Hargrove will visit on Saturday for Pitt’s spring game and whether he tags along or not, Scates plans to eventually see Pitt’s campus.
“I haven’t even taken a visit up there yet, but I’m really looking forward to visiting. They’re telling me how much I would love it up there and like I said, they’re showing a lot of love and always staying in contact with me and my parents,” Scates said. “I’m not sure what date I’ll visit yet. I haven’t scheduled any trips yet.”
One school notably absent from Scates’ discussions with recruiting reporters was Ohio State. The Buckeyes were involved with the Rivals100 standout, but Scates says his contact lately with Ohio State hasn’t been what it is with other programs.
“I haven’t really even talked with Ohio State like that. That’s all him,” Scates said, referring to his teammate Tavion Thomas, who was standing nearby and holds an offer from the Buckeyes.
Thomas and Scates, along with linebacker Antwuan Johnson, will be a key cog in Dunbar’s hopes for a playoff push in their senior seasons. Dunbar was barred from postseason play in the 2016 season, but their 2017 campaign could yield fruit with such a talented roster.
“Our goal is to go to states and make it to state, win or lose. That’s our goal. I’m working on my route-running and my ball and hand skills,” Scates said. “That’s pretty much it. I feel like I already have the speed.”
During the ten games he played in the 2016 season, Scates posted 30 catches for 688 yards and 14 touchdowns. He was a threat to house the ball on nearly any play and added two touchdowns and 126 yards in the rushing game on just seven carries while also proving to be a dynamic option in the return game. Scates is among the country’s top wide receivers by any measure.