Saturday, April 07, 2007

Another familiar name is Irish...

David Posluzny, the younger brother of former Penn State linebacker and 2-time Butkus award winner Paul Posluzny, didn't wait around to see if JoePa and the Nittany Lions would offer him a scholarship.

After this past week's visit to South Bend (his 5th), the junior decided that the opportunity to receive any Ivy-league quality education and compete every year for a national championship was too much to pass on. (His words, not mine) Therefore, after receiving a scholarship offer from Coach Weis while he was in town, he called Coach Weis back and accepted, becoming the fifth member of next year's recruiting class.

He joins Mike Golic, Jr. this year (son of Mike Golic, Sr. - ESPN analyst) and Jimmy Clausen last year (brother of the Clausens that played QB at Tennessee) as a name many other recruits will recognize going into this recruiting season.

While talent is of course the first consideration when offering a player, these types of commitment generate their own buzz, not just during recruiting, but throughout the player's time here. Each year, analysts for the games love to talk about connections between the players and other famous people. How many times during the NCAA basketball tournament did you hear stories about Joakim Noah's tennis playing father (and Swedish beauty queen mother), Darryl Strawberry's baseball playing father, or Pat Ewing Jr.'s basketball playing father? How many times have we heard that Brady Quinn's sister married Ohio State linebacker A.J. Hawk? For the next four or five years, we'll be hearing about Dave Posluzny's brother in the NFL, Jimmy Clausen's brothers that never quite measured up to his ability, and endless discussion of Mike Golic Sr. (I'm curious to see how daddy Golic balances his son's success with his journalistic duties)

This high-profile talk will only shine a brighter spotlight on the Irish football program, providing Coach Weis with that many more tools to use in recruiting in the future. Kids like to be in the spotlight, and the amount of media coverage of the Irish should not be lacking anytime soon. Heck, even during the off-season we may hear incessant talk about Irish football, with Jeff Samardzija embarking on a promising career in baseball, and Tommy Z has a similar decision to make this year in regards to boxing.

An exclusive NBC contract, most of our away games (usually in prime time) on ABC or CBS, 60 minutes interviews of our coach, and numerous profiles of players and their relationship to other stars. No lack of media coverage here.

One thing we do lack? Off the field stories that seem to predominate in the offseason. No football players engaging in home invasion and assault. No players shooting off their semi-automatics weapons at nightclubs or throwing down in a parking garage. No star wide receivers getting stabbed in the chest during a bar fight and then being thrown under the bus by their coach. Oh, and those are just the stories goin around today.

On days like today, it's good to be Irish.

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