James Franklin and his Penn State football program apparently aren’t playing around when it comes to off-field issues for anyone, highly-touted recruits included.
Citing a source close to the Nittany Lions program, nj.com is reporting that PSU has rescinded its scholarship offer to 2018 New Jersey high schooler Dorian Hardy. The rescission comes a week after Hardy was reportedly involved in a post-practice brawl at his Paramus high school that, ultimately, sent one of his teammates to the hospital and led to the dismissal of an assistant coach.
From the interweb arm of the Newark Star-Ledger:
Hardy is one of four Paramus Catholic players and an assistant coach involved in a brawl that took place after practice last Friday. Two freshmen involved in the fight said Hardy ignited the melee when he pulled on one of their jerseys; later, freshman Miles Mitchell said Hardy punched him in the face at least twice.
Mitchell was diagnosed with a concussion and is currently being treated at Valley Hospital in Ridgewood after suffering a seizure Wednesday at school, his father said.
Hardy’s parents said their son only punched Mitchell after he swung his helmet and struck senior Jonathan Clark. The Hardys also say Mitchell’s father, Michael Mitchell, who also is a Paramus Catholic assistant coach, punched Dorian Hardy twice during the fight.
Michael Mitchell denied striking Hardy, but said he has been fired by Paramus Catholic from his coaching position.
Miles Mitchell admitted to striking Clark with his helmet, but said he did so because Clark was choking him with both hands.
The convoluted and troubling situation is currently under investigation by the Paramus Police Department. It’s expected that unspecified charges against unspecified individuals allegedly involved in the brouhaha will be filed “in the next couple of days.”
A four-star 2018 recruit, Hardy is rated as the No. 8 strongside defensive end in the country; the No. 6 player at any position in the state of New Jersey; and the No. 174 player overall on 247Sports.com‘s composite board. In June of this year, Hardy committed to Penn State.
In addition to PSU, Hardy held offers from, among others, Alabama, Clemson, Florida, LSU, Miami, Michigan, Ohio State and Tennessee.