Two from Penn State included in ESPN’s Top 300 recruiting ranking for 2025
The Class of 2024 is still half a year away from beginning to sign their letter of intent, but the eyes of the recruiting world are always looking to what comes next. On Tuesday, ESPN released its ESPN Junior 300 rankings for the first time to give a glimpse at how the recruiting staff at ESPN is evaluating the nation’s top junior talent around the country.
And Penn State has two of the top 300 players lined up in its Class of 2025 haul already.
Offensive tackle Jaelyne Matthews is Penn State’s highest-rated recruit in the Class of 2025 so far, and he is the first of the two commits to appear in ESPN’s top 300 ranking for 2025. Matthews checks in at no. 81 on the ESPN recruiting ranking with a four-star ranking.
Matthews now carries four-star ratings from four recruiting outlets with ESPN, On3, 247Sports, and Rivals all forming a unanimous four-star rating. And all four have Matthews as a top 100 player on their respective rankings with Rivals going as high as 53 and 247Sports going the lowest with 98th in the nation overall. Regardless, everyone seems to agree just how much of a win this commitment is for Penn State as it continues to build quality depth and strength on the offensive line through recruiting.
Matthews was Penn State’s first commit in the Class of 2025, continuing a recent trend of having a big offensive lineman be the first commit on the board for the program the past few years. Matthews, from Toms River, NJ, recently committed to play in the 2025 All-American Bowl. Matthews committed to Penn State in late January of this year.
The second of two commits to appear in ESPN’s top 300 ranking for the Class of 2025 is running back Kiandrea Barker, from The Woodlands, TX. Barker is a relatively new commit to the recruiting class, giving his verbal commitment to the Nittany Lions in mid-April. Barker is ranked 241st on ESPN’s recruit ranking with a four-star rating.
That gives Barker a consensus four-star rating with four-star grades from 247Sports, On3, and Rivals as well. The other three recruiting outlets do have higher overall rankings for Barker with Rivals going as high as 123rd in the nation and 247Sports and On3 ranking Barker 202nd and 217th, respectively.
See the full ESPN Junior 300 rankings to see what prospects are at the top.
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