Penn Hills WR Julian Major signs on with Michigan State

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Friday, December 22, 2017 | 12:36 AM


Julian Major has known for months where he wanted to play football in college.

So, he didn't want to waste any time making his decision final. He signed a letter of intent to play at Michigan State during the first-ever NCAA Division I early signing period Dec. 20.

Major, a three-star recruit, according to Rivals.com, was joined by his mother, Rhonda Bentley, and his brother, Aaron, as he signed his name to officially become a Spartan for Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio.

“I was really excited to get to the next step. This is on the way to getting my family where I want them to be. I felt blessed to have that moment,” Major said.

“It's something you dream about as a kid and to see it unfold was great. I'm proud to get this far.”

Before verbally committing in July, Major was mulling offers from Virginia, Wisconsin, Kentucky and Iowa State.

Major was ranked among the top players in Pennsylvania by 247Sports (No. 19), ESPN (No. 22) and Rivals (No. 33). He was ranked 89th among wide receivers nationwide, according to 247Sports.

In a news release, Dantonio said he loves Major's ability to stretch the field and added he is a “very smooth and athletic player” with “great hands and catches the ball fluidly.”

Major (6-1, 180) will get head start in East Lansing by enrolling for the 2018 spring semester, with the intention to major in journalism and participate in spring practice.

“I'm early enrollment. I knew where I wanted to go, so why waste time when I get can started when I could,” said Major, who will report to East Lansing on Jan. 4.

Even though the Penn Hills football team returned to the WPIAL playoffs this season, Major struggled to stay on the field while battling injuries. He accumulated 151 yards receiving but was still an honorable mention all-conference selection.

“My motivation is the people back at home,” he said. “I have to stay mentally strong and never give up and stay aggressive. I'm going to do my thing and put it on for Pittsburgh.”

The Indians (8-4, 3-3) made their deepest playoff run since 2008 by reaching the WPIAL Class 6A semifinals, where they lost to Central Catholic, 17-8.

During his junior year, Major finished with 31 catches for 433 yards and seven touchdowns and was one of four WPIAL players nominated for the 2018 U.S. Army All-American Bowl.

Michigan State (9-3, 7-2) had a bounce-back season after finishing 3-9 overall and 1-8 in Big Ten action in 2016.

Heading into the Holiday Bowl against No. 18 Washington State on Dec. 28, the Spartans were ranked No. 16 in the College Football Playoff rankings.

The Indians hope to be well-represented when other seniors sign their letters of intent in early February.

The remaining senior class is headlined by linebacker Darrell Mason, who received offers from Robert Morris, IUP, Slippery Rock, St. Francis (Pa.), West Virginia Wesleyan and Seton Hill.

Andrew John is a freelance writer.

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