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Malik Golden Commits to Penn State

Submitted by on August 24, 2011One Comment

Before a crowd of teammates, coaches and parents, Cheshire Academy athlete Malik Golden announced he was choosing Penn State over Iowa, Boston College and hometown favorite, UConn, finally ending the recruitment of one of the best 2012 prospects out of Connecticut.

Though Malik Golden had originally intended to make a decision as early as last Wednesday when Cheshire Academy would begin practicing for the upcoming season, he decided he just wasn’t ready yet.

It eventually came down to a neck-in-neck, four-way tie between the Penn State, Iowa, Boston College and UConn til the very end. Iowa was the first D-1 program to offer the 3-star recruit and he felt a sense of gratitude to the Hawkeyes. In-state UConn had been in contact with him the longest; former UConn coach Randy Edsall kicked things off from the onset as early as his freshman season, and current coach Paul Pasqualoni continued to foster that relationship with the in-state recruit, but it wasn’t until a final unofficial visit to Penn State just 5 days ago when Golden knew he would become the 17th member of the 2012 Class.

“I couldn’t put the schools in any order until I went to Penn State,” Golden told [ESPN's Roger] Brown. “I went to a camp there, but had never visited. I considered all four right to the end.”

And to think, Golden was on the verge of missing out on his unofficial to Penn State altogether which could very well have derailed his path to Happy Valley. Friday’s visit was actually his second attempt at an unofficial visit following a botched try back in July when miscommunication between Golden and Penn State led to the postponement of his first trip. Reportedly, Golden and his family were already hours into their trip to State College before a mutual agreement to postpone the unofficial visit was made.

Fortunately for Penn State, Malik Golden decided to hold off his decision until after he had a chance to take an unofficial visit to State College last Friday. In fact, Friday’s visit was the first time Golden had been back since he camped in June. He now joins fellow commits Austin Johnson and Derek Dowrey as members of the 2012 Class that earned their offers this summer at Penn State’s Rising Senior Camp.

This is what he had to say about his unofficial visit,

“I went on a day where everyone was moving in and it really feels like a college town. It’s such a great academic school also and playing for Coach Paterno is an honor.”

The 6’11″, 185 lb recruit is a versatile do-it-all athlete for the Fighting Cats who utilized Golden’s athleticism on both sides of the ball as a receiver, running back, cornerback, safety, punt and kickoff returner.

Golden caught 48 passes for 680 yards and five touchdowns as a junior, and also added over 700 yards on the ground. He returned both a kickoff and an interception for a score in 2010.

And though he was recruited primarily as a receiver by most programs, he is actually projected to be a cornerback at Penn State filling a dire need in the defensive secondary. Prior to the 2012 Class, the Nittany Lions have only picked up 2 defensive back recruits in the last 3 years and by next season, only 4 CBs will be left the roster. Malik Golden should join fellow 2012 commits Armani Reeves and Jake Kiley in adding some much needed depth to the secondary.

Video after the jump…

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