Penn State Extends Offer to Strath Haven's John Harrar

By Eric Gibson on April 20, 2017 at 10:00 am
Pat Chambers John Harrar

Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports


While we focused on the two known visitors for Penn State basketball this week, it turns out Pat Chambers and his staff played host to another surprise visitor on Wednesday. We received a tip that this prospect was on campus yesterday, and then Josh Verlin from City of Basketball Love broke the news last evening. 

This is a recruitment no one saw coming. Just over two months ago, John Harrar was celebrating his decision to head to West Point and play football for Army. However, the two-sport star has had a change of heart and will instead pursue a basketball scholarship this spring. 

The 6-foot-8 big man is a solid athlete with impressive highlights both on the court and on the gridiron. However, doubts will linger about how he projects at the Big Ten level. Penn State became the first high major school to offer, blowing up what had been a low major recruitment to date. Unless other major programs hop in over the next few weeks, this can only be categorized as a sleeper recruit. 

From his tape, you can see there are definitely some tools to work with. He has deft touch on his face-up jumper and showcases good athleticism in the open floor. However, there's only so much you can takeaway from Central League competition in suburban Philadelphia. That's why Harrar plans to showcase his talents in the upcoming AAU live periods these next two weekends. As an openly available big man in April, he'll definitely draw interest, but we'll see who bites. 

For now, this is a puzzling offer as Harrar doesn't offer immediate help for next season. With Trent Buttrick and Satchel Pierce joining Mike Watkins, Lamar Stevens, and Julian Moore up front, the Lions have more dire needs in their backcourt. Harrar would likely be a redshirt candidate for next season if he were to join the Nittany Lions.