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Fact or Fiction: Penn St. commit Andrew Rappleyea should be in top 200

Rivals national recruiting analyst Adam Friedman, Richie Schnyderite of, Luke Winstel of and Dave Lackford of tackle three topics and determine whether they believe each statement is FACT or FICTION.


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1. Penn State tight end commit Andrew Rappleyea should be a top 200 prospect in the Rivals250.

Friedman's take: FACT. After seeing Rappleyea play in person over the weekend, it's clear he is underrated. How high should he move in the rankings? We'll see how things across the country shake out, but I could certainly see him well within the Rivals250. Rappleyea is currently No. 13 in the tight end rankings, but he'll probably get much closer to the top five. He has a great frame and looks to be in the 230-pound range. He made catches all over the field on Saturday and even took a handoff for a long touchdown. Rappleyea also played defense and his aggressive playing style was a big asset to his team.

Schnyderite's take: FACT. Rappleyea has quietly developed into one of the nation’s top tight ends over the past year. This offseason he worked a lot on his route running and receiving skills and it’s starting to show on the gridiron. He recently had a game where he hauled in five receptions for 140-plus yards versus a solid opponent. I think he definitely deserves a significant bump. How high, though? That’s still to be determined.



2. If Louisville gets rid of Scott Satterfield, its impressive recruiting class will fall apart.

Scott Satterfield
Scott Satterfield (AP Images)

Friedman's take: FACT. I'll say fact here, but this isn't as easy an answer in the NIL world we're living in. Highly rated players are always going to feel the pull of other big-name schools, regardless of their commitment status. In years past, there was a good chance they would flip elsewhere if the head coach was fired.

Even if the hypothetical new coach at Louisville is somebody the recruits like, big schools with bigger NIL budgets will still come calling. Satterfield has never been known as an amazing recruiter, but there is a longstanding relationship he has with the recruits. If bigger NIL offers were always out there for the recruits, it would seem their relationship with Satterfield and his staff were the things keeping them from flipping to another school.

Maybe a new coach drives increased NIL funds for Louisville, but the Cardinals are still going to need to build the relationships with the recruits, and that's a tall order on such a compressed timeline.

Lackford's take: FICTION. Louisville hired Satterfield in 2018. Before NIL legislation made it legal to pay recruits, he wasn't exactly known for his recruiting prowess. In fact, he had signed an inadequate total of four four-stars in four cycles from 2019 through 2022. One of those four-stars never made it to campus. In 2022, however, the NIL legislation went into effect, and now it’s legal for collectives to offer players advertising deals if they sign for the program they sponsor.

This season, the Cardinals have a top 25 recruiting class bolstered by eight four-stars, with seven of them being ranked among the top 200 prospects in the nation. I haven’t seen any of the NIL offers made to these prospects, but you don’t have to be a financial analyst to discern what the catalyst has been.

The four-stars committed to Louisville aren't committed to the allure of the coaching staff. They're committed to the dollar amounts being promised for signing here. That’s why I think this class will remain mostly intact regardless of Satterfield’s fate, as long as the NIL deals remain in place. If the NIL deals fall apart because the staff is let go, then the class will fracture.



3. Tennessee has the upper hand in 2024 Rivals250 WR Mazeo Bennett's commitment.

Mazeo Bennett
Mazeo Bennett (Nick Lucero/

Friedman's take: FACT. Tennessee fans have a lot to be thankful for right now and coach Josh Heupel's potent offense has caught the attention of plenty of big-time recruits. Mazeo Bennett, the 2024 Rivals250 wide receiver out of South Carolina, is scheduled to announce his commitment on Sunday, and it seems like Rocky Top is where he wants to be. South Carolina is one of his other main contenders, and the Gamecocks could be a threat to flip him down the road, but Tennessee seems likely to win out on Sunday.

Winstel's take: FACT. Bennett has been trending toward Tennessee for a few weeks now. The Vols' passing attack intrigues Bennett, who recently called the Tennessee offense “electric” and “something that a wide receiver dreams of.” The four-star has a very strong relationship both on and off the field with Tennessee receivers coach Kelsey Pope, and he was blown away by the environment at Neyland Stadium during his visit to Knoxville for the game against Florida.

Tennessee is an up-and-coming SEC team that’s fueled by a strong passing offense. Bennett’s versatility and ability to play as both an inside and outside receiver fits the Vols' scheme well. He would be a dangerous young athlete to place around Nico Iamaleava. The combination of these factors gives the Vols a strong upper hand in Bennett’s recruitment.