When a major program loses a key recruit, Rivals.com takes a look at how big of a blow it is to the respective school, analyzing it from a local and national level. To quantify the “sting” of each decommitment, we assign a score from one to 10, with one being no big deal and 10 being a catastrophic hit.
Marcus Stokes thought he found his future home at Penn State.
The three-star dual-threat quarterback visited Happy Valley numerous times before his commitment and then made his pledge in early April.
After Penn State took two commitments in the 2022 class, Stokes was the selection in 2023, and it looked like the Nittany Lions had gone to Ponte Vedra Beach (Fla.) Nease for one of their next signal-callers.
But in June, Stokes participated in a 7on7 in Gainesville. He started to hear more from the Florida staff and after a visit there landed an offer from the Gators.
Things moved quickly with the Gators, but in recent days Stokes hinted to new Florida pledge Treyaun Webb the two should play together in Gainesville. Stokes flipped and Webb picked Florida on Thursday.
Losing a commit, especially the only quarterback prospect in a recruiting class, is never a good sign. But at the end of the day Stokes flipping to Florida isn’t the end of the world for Penn State.
For starters he just had a rough Elite 11 Finals camp and finished ranked in the lower portion of all the QBs, per Rivals. Also, the Nittany Lions landed two highly ranked QB recruits in the class of 2022 in Drew Allar and Beau Pribula. So, while having Stokes would’ve been nice for depth it’s unlikely he would’ve beaten out either of those two over the next few years. Only a small sting here for Penn State. – Richard Schnyderite, NittanyNation.com
Sting Factor: 4
SEC teams have not been kind to Penn State in recent weeks. First, offensive lineman Joshua Miller flipped to Georgia. Now, Stokes is headed to Florida. It’s a good sign that the Nittany Lions are recruiting SEC-level players, but keeping them in the class is the most important thing. Stokes is a talented dual-threat quarterback who actually seems more comfortable throwing off-platform, improvising, making plays happen with freedom to prolong plays and leave the pocket, so he will definitely be missed. But Penn State has a host of young, talented quarterback, so Stokes’ flip is not a back-breaker at all. – Adam Gorney, Rivals national recruiting director
Sting Factor: 5