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Five-star RB Tyree lists Penn State among favorites

Penn State is among top options for five-star running back Chris Tyree. The long-pursued prospect tweeted a list of 10 favorite universities Wednesday afternoon.

Tyree sustains interest in the Nittany Lions, who presented him with a scholarship offer prior to his sophomore season at Thomas Dale (Chester, Va.) High School. The 5-foot-9, 185-pound playmaker also included Florida State, Michigan, Mississippi State, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Stanford, Virginia and Virginia Tech in his collection of contenders.

Considered the No. 1 all-purpose back and No. 23 overall talent in 247Sports 2020 composite rankings, Tyree carries nearly 30 offers. He earned one from Penn State while on campus for a June 2017 camp where he finished the 40-yard dash in 4.44 seconds. His 2018 midseason highlights are featured at the top of this page.

Tyree also shines at defensive back and kick returner. He is an excellent receiver out of the backfield.

He rushed for 1,829 yards (8.7 per carry) and 17 touchdowns as an underclassman, then took his production to another level during an impressive junior campaign.

Tyree totaled 1,446 rushing yards (8.2 per carry), 302 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns in 12 games, according to MaxPreps. He added 41 tackles on defense and scored on a kickoff return for the third straight season.

Tyree attended each of the last two ‘White Out’ games at Beaver Stadium, helping to set an attendance record at both matchups (2017 vs. Michigan; 2018 vs. Ohio State). His in-season travel itinerary also included stops at Mississippi State, Stanford and Virginia Tech. Former Penn State running backs coach Charles Huff quickly made him a priority upon following Joe Moorhead to Mississippi State.

Tyree journeyed to Penn State in July for the Lasch Bash barbecue alongside his parents, Richard and Michelle. The family attended a pair of Penn State games in 2017 but, to that point, hadn’t visited in 2018.

“I felt like I had to get back up to Penn State,” he said afterward.

The group of players he encountered there included a pair of blue-chip running backs who also established their football reputations on the high school fields of Virginia: Nittany Lions freshman Ricky Slade and committed 2019 recruit Devyn Ford.

“I’ve seen them at basically any camp I’ve been to. Any time I see them, I’ll speak with them for a while,” Tyree said.

Slade was the No. 1 all-purpose back in 2018 composite rankings, while Ford is a top-five prospect at the position in his class. Both players spurned in-state options in favor of Penn State. Those decisions have created quite an impression, according to Tyree.

“I feel like it catches everyone from Virginia’s attention because we have so much pride here,” he said. “Everything in Virginia is about representing the state, representing where you’re from. It’s definitely big seeing that two running backs from Virginia [will be] at Penn State.”

Tyree, the second-ranked recruit in 2020 Virginia composite rankings, could ultimately follow a similar path to PSU.

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