Prospect watch: Penns Manor's Danny Ferens
6-foot, 195 pounds, QB-WR, Penns Manor
After rushing for 1,818 yards and 31 touchdowns this past fall, Danny Ferens wanted to keep the ball in his hands in college even if he knew his days at quarterback were numbered.
When Penn promised he could play receiver, Ferens couldn't turn down the combination of Ivy League academics and playing offense for a Division I-FCS team.
“It's going to be a little bit different at first, but I feel I can adapt,” Ferens said. “What the coaches tell me is that I'm best in the open field. They want to throw it to me in the open.”
Ferens is the son of Dan Ferens, a business administrator in the Steelers' front office. Despite playing in relative obscurity at Penns Manor, a District 6-A school in Indiana County, he still had offers from Air Force, Colgate, Duquesne, Lehigh and Indiana (Pa.). Pitt and Penn State wanted him as a preferred walk-on.
“I think he's an electric athlete,” said Bob Lichtenfels, recruiting analyst for 247 Sports. “Every time he touches the ball, he's literally a threat to score. The thing that hurt him over the years is competition. He hasn't played anybody, so he hasn't been seen that much. But he literally dominated everybody he played.”
Lichtenfels believes that Ferens, who has been timed at 4.52 seconds in the 40-yard dash, would have had BCS offers if he had played in the WPIAL. Ferens, who has a 96-percent grade average and scored 1,660 on the SAT, had his eye on the Ivy League anyway.
“I thought about moving, but I was too loyal to my team and my close-knit friendships,” Ferens said. “Even if I'd had the D-I offers, I probably still would have went the Ivy League route just because of the education.”