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STATE CHAMPS! SCOUT TEAM: Belleville 4-star OLB Jamari Buddin commits to Penn State

By: , July 17, 2020, 12:06 pm

Very little pursuit in football is as ferocious as Belleville’s Jamari Buddin coming off the edge, chasing down a quarterback. 

Except maybe for the pursuit of Buddin’s services on the college level. 

The standout outside linebacker committed to Penn State on Friday, making the announcement with a video post on Twitter. 

“The recruiting process has been stressful, but I’ve been doing a lot of thinking. Like I said before, it’s about the best fit for you and your family. I meant that,” Buddin said in the video. “There’s been one school that I feel is the best fit for me and my family, and where I’ve also built a never-ending relationship with. I can honestly call it a family.”

The 6-foot-2, 210-pound Buddin was rated as a four-star prospect by 247Sports, the No. 8 prospect in Michigan’s 2021 class, and the No. 23 outside linebacker in the nation. He ranked No. 13 on the STATE CHAMPS! 300 list, as well. 

He chose his destination from a list of 17 offers, including (among others): Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Arkansas, Cincinnati, Florida State, Kentucky and Ole Miss.

Family was a big part of the recruiting process for Buddin.

“I’ve experienced one of the roughest times in my life. I almost lost my mom; that will be a time I’ll never forget. That changed me in so many different ways. One of the most important lessons I learned from that is to be forever grateful, because the things and people that you love the most can be taken away in a second. That’s what it felt like,” the rising senior said in the video, thanking all those who had a part in his recruitment, including family members and coach Jermain Crowell.

“For that, I want to thank God first, for giving me my mom and my family to look up to every day, and blessing me with my athletic abilities. I want to thank my mom for raising me right, and making sure I stayed away from every situation possible that would’ve gotten me in trouble, and loving me unconditionally. I want to thank my dad for taking the lead in this whole process, helping me make this decision, and being my shoulder to lean on, always. I want to thank my grandparents for always being one call away for anything and everything I need. No matter the circumstances, I could always count on them.”

Penn State has done exceptionally well in Michigan in recent years, grabbing Cass Tech’s Kalen and Kobe King and Detroit King’s Jaylen Reed in the 2021 recruiting class, Oak Park’s Enzo Jennings and East Kentwood’s Bryce Mostella in 2020, and West Bloomfield’s Lance Dixon in 2019. 

— MATTHEW B. MOWERY