Penn State Announces 2015 Early Signing Class

By Jacob Gill
Philadelphia Region Director of Scouting

Penn State and head coach Rob Cooper have announced the signing of eleven players to National Letters of Intent, including five standouts from Pennsylvania.  The Nittany Lions went 18-32 in 2014, Cooper's first year at the helm, which was a four-win improvement from the season prior to his arrival.

2015 Pennsylvania Early Commits

Willie Burger, 3B/C, Lancaster Catholic
PBR Rank: #7 in PA (#56 in PBR Combined Rankings)
PBR Notes: Represented the Yankees at the 2014 Area Code Games. Quick bat with balanced approach at the plate and solid raw power from the right side. Hands, feet and arm strength should translate well defensively at either corner infield spot or behind the plate. PIAA eligibility exhausted due to mid-high school transfer; will play this spring season at IMG Academy in Florida. Named all-Lancaster Lebanon League as a pitcher his junior year, and can run his fastball into the upper-80s.

Connor Klemann, IF, Spring-Ford
PBR Rank: #60 in PA
PBR Notes: Right-handed hitter with solid tools across the board, including good foot speed, and quality approach at the plate. Named 1st-team all-Pioneer Athletic Conference for a junior season in which he led the PAC-10 in hitting during Spring-Ford's run to the PIAA class AAAA semifinals.

Eric Mock, RHP, Governor Mifflin
PBR Rank: #32 in PA (#250 in PBR Combined Rankings)
PBR Notes: Physical 6-foot-2, 205-pound frame. Mid-80s fastball that will reach into the upper-80s early in outings. Solid curveball and tumbling split-grip change-up complete his repertoire. Represented the Phillies at the 2014 East Coast Pro Showcase and the Northeast Mets Scout Team at the 2014 Metropolitan Baseball Classic. 

Eli Nabholz, RHP, Pottsville Area
PBR Rank: #22 in PA (#176 in PBR Combined Rankings)
Huge upside in 6-foot-6, 230-pound frame. Mid-80s fastball with occasional armside sink that can touch upper-80s. Has featured a solid curveball, slider, and change-up at various times as part of his repertoire.

Ryan Sloniger, C, Punxsutawney Area
PBR Rank: #23 in PA (#191 in PBR Combined Rankings)
PBR Notes: Good athlete behind the dish who has the ability to record sub-2.0 pop times. Solid bat speed and quiet approach from the left-side of the plate. Was named the Northern Allegheny League Large School Division Player of the Year following a junior campaign in which he hit .524 with ten extra base hits, plus nine walks against only two strikeouts. 

2015 Out-of-State Early Commits

Brian George
, LHP, Petersburg (WV) - PBR Rank: #9 in WV
Justin Hagenman, RHP, Bishop Eustace Prep (NJ)
Blake Hodgens, LHP, Gaither (FL)
Conlin Hughes, IF, Holly Springs (NC)
Keith Leavitt, OF, St. John's Prep (MA) - PBR Rank: #35 in MA
Austin Riggins, OF, Riverside (SC)

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