Illinois coaches were in State College, Pa., on Wednesday and other coaches have said they've been in contact with players. Preseason practice starts at Penn State on Aug. 6. At least 13 top players and as many as 30 affirmed their commitment to Penn State on Wednesday, including Mauti and senior quarterback Matt McGloin.
New Illinois coach Tim Beckman said coaches seeking Penn State players have nothing to apologize for. He said the Illini sent a list of names to Penn State before doing anything else.
"We're just following the rules of the NCAA," he said. "We were in State College but we did not go on campus. We went to establishments outside campus and called some individuals. If they wanted to come by, it was their opportunity to come by."
Michigan coach Brady Hoke said he glanced at the Nittany Lions' roster but was not going after Nittany Lions players. Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald said there was no way the Wildcats would pursue Penn State players.
And Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio said the Spartans would respond only if they were contacted. He did not give names.
"What we have done is if people have contacted us — a coach, a parent — we have followed through. That is the extent of it. If there are people who are receptive to that and come back with us, understand that I'm just here just to create opportunities," he said. "We're not going to invest in going beyond that."
It's a touchy subject. Commissioner Jim Delany spoke with league coaches.
"We're trying to put an override on this that allows an athlete as much opportunity as the rules allow, that allows for collegial relationships between our schools to be done in the right way," Delany said.
"It also puts the athletes and the coaches to interface if that's what they want to do. But I think it should be focused that there's an opportunity there for a school and a player, that's great, if not, they should move on. That's my view."
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