ShareThis Page

Gorman: Robert Morris lands WPIAL trio

Kevin Gorman
| Monday, Sept. 21, 2015, 9:30 p.m.

Matt Fennell followed his future teammates on Twitter, so the Upper St. Clair offensive lineman saw the announcements of their college choice before making his.

Fennell's decision to make a verbal commitment to Robert Morris was an independent one, but it followed Clairton multi-purpose back Harrison Dreher and Penn-Trafford defensive end Chris Stanford this weekend.

“Seeing what Robert Morris is trying to build — a team with WPIAL kids — that really stood out to me,” said Fennell, a 6-foot-4, 280-pounder. “I thought that was interesting and cool, something I want to be part of. They made me feel like I was part of the team and someone they needed. I liked that I could be part of a program on the rise.”

It was symbolic of the latest trend in Western Pennsylvania recruiting. Prospects with Division I-FBS offers are staying close to home to play, hopefully right away, for local I-FCS programs.

Duquesne lured linebacker Nate Stone from Greensburg Central Catholic with an early commitment in 2013 and tailback P.J. Fulmore from Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic last year.

Fennell, like Stanford, had an offer from Old Dominion of Conference USA. Stanford also had offers from Buffalo, Eastern Michigan and Ohio, as well as FCS power Youngstown State.

Fennell, Stanford and Dreher proved they would rather play right away, perhaps in starring roles like Stone and Fulmore, than stand on the sidelines.

“If I would've went to the MAC, I probably would've redshirted,” said Stanford, a 6-4, 265-pounder recruited by many at defensive tackle. “There's a good chance to play right away, so I pulled the trigger.”

And RMU landed its targets.

Kevin Gorman is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at kgorman@tribweb.com or via Twitter @KGorman_Trib.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me