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Penn State Football Recruiting

North Catholic Star Brady O’Hara Talks Penn State Commitment, Special WPIAL Bond

Brady O'Hara
Courtesy Brady O'Hara

Like all players in the Class of 2025, North Catholic 3-star athlete Brady O’Hara is preparing for his senior season and final season at home before heading off to college.

The 6’6″, 250-pounder got his recruitment behind him early as he made a commitment to James Franklin, Terry Smith and Penn State last September.

After getting after it the last few weeks and practicing with his North Catholic teammates, O’Hara has a bit of break before full preparations begin for the 2024 WPIAL season.

Brady O’Hara

Courtesy Brady O’Hara

“We’re actually on a break from football,” O’Hara tells Nittany Sports Now. “Fourth of July week we get a break and we’ll be back at it on July 8th. Aside from football, it’s been working out at my local workout place called Outer Limits. I have a trainer there working with me on becoming more explosive, working on my foot work, my speed. Other than that, aside from football, I haven’t been doing anything special, just relaxing and being with my family.”

Speaking of family, before I brought it up, O’Hara realizes these next few months will be special as this will be his last summer at home before leaving for college. He’s cherishing the time and also doing some other things that he enjoys.

“I’m not trying to think about it too much. I kind of want to live in the moment and I guess when it comes to that time, I’ll think about it. It’s sad in a way that I have to leave but I’ll be moving onto better things. I am trying to really enjoy the last full summer that I have with my friends and family.”

“I’ve been getting into pickle ball lately and started playing that with my friends. Another big thing is to listen to music while I’m sleeping. Those two are really high on my list of favorite things to do–listen to music and sleep.”

Unlike most high school recruits, O’Hara didn’t really let the recruiting process play out. O’Hara only held other offers from Pitt, West Virginia, UConn and Marshall before closing down his recruitment and committing to Penn State. It goes without saying that if O’Hara let things play out, he would’ve had a long list of offers and programs pursuing him.

That’s not something he wanted and wasn’t a huge priority to him.

Becoming a Nittany Lion was.

“The recruiting process is a big deal and I’m glad I got it out of the way early,” said O’Hara. “I guess yes and no. The recruiting process was fun, and it was cool to be able to meet new people. But I’m glad that it’s over and that I’m at peace with my decision.”

“I do remember one time I was in the car with my dad, and I was going to a workout and I said, ‘Imagine if they offer me here’. This was back in February of last year, I do remember thinking that it would be sick if I got a big offer, not that I didn’t have big offers before, but Penn State was one school that stuck out to me. One thing about Penn State was that I believed in what they said to me. They were one of the colleges that weren’t BS’ing me. They were actually telling me the truth in what they would do with me. That’s something that came into play the most and how much I trusted them. Another thing was the fans at Penn State and how they play football. I saw myself truly wanting to play with a bunch of fans that loved the college that they go to and the coaches that really loved where they were coaching and coaches that would really develop me.”

Brady O’Hara

Courtesy Brady O’Hara

Special WPIAL Bond

O’Hara believes playing for a program like Penn State is special along with the fact that he’s one of four other players from the WPIAL that are going to be joining him in State College.

“All the commits at Penn State, we have a group text and stay in touch almost every day,” said O’Hara. “But it’s special that we have a real tight bond because we’re from the WPIAL. We kind of connect a bit more than everyone else because we’re from the WPIAL and play each other every Friday. It’s a cool thing.”

This coming season for North Catholic High School, O’Hara will be lining up as a tight end but come next spring, things will be changing once he puts on the Blue and White at Penn State.

“As of now, I’m a lineman for Penn State. I play tight end for my high school team but I’m playing tackle at Penn State. I trust Coach Trautwein and what he’s going to do with me.”

“I remember Coach Smith coming in last year in March and told me that they would want me to be moving to tackle,” said O’Hara. “At first, I was kind of like, “Aah, I don’t know, I’m not sure”. But then on my next visit, I talked to Coach Franklin and other coaches, and we were talking and he just said that this is how we see you and why we know you can be developed into a tackle. After that, it’s just a trust factor that I have with them. I trust them and they trust me that I can get to the next level. I believe in them when they tell me that I can be a tackle in the NFL. At first, I was kind of iffy about it but now I’m good and firmly believe in what they do as a program and can’t wait to see what they do with me.”

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