Harlan on recruiting: Joey Porter Jr. making a name for himself at NA

Wednesday, October 25, 2017 | 7:30 PM

Joey Porter Jr. was born with one of the most recognizable names in the WPIAL, but the North Allegheny junior quickly is making a name for himself.

Porter isn't a 250-pound linebacker like his father, the former Steelers star, but rather a speedy 6-foot-2, 175-pound defensive back with Division I offers.

“His length is one of the things that makes him most attractive at the next level as a corner,” North Allegheny coach Art Walker said. “He has the ability to play bump and run, he does have good technique, good feet and has good recovery speed.”

Porter, who already holds a Pitt offer, added Toledo to his scholarship list this month.

This is Porter's first season at North Allegheny after transferring last spring from Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic, where he scored 10 times last season. That required an adjustment from Class 2A football to Class 6A, the largest classification, but he transitioned quickly and earned a starting cornerback spot in summer camp.

“People don't take into account there were a lot of things he had to learn,” Walker said. “It's a different coaching staff, different styles, different way we practice, all those different things. He's still going through the growing pains of that transition. He's still learning on the run all the time, but he's handled things in stride.”

Porter has five interceptions this season despite missing almost three games with an injury. He picked off three passes in a game against Seneca Valley. He's also returned a fumble 75 yards for a touchdown and a punt 46 yards to the end zone this season.

At times, defensive coordinator Doug Brinkley has asked Porter to follow an opponent's top receiver. North Allegheny hosts top-ranked Pine-Richland on Friday.

“He's covered some good kids,” Walker said.

But it's possible Porter might play wide receiver in college. He rotated in at receiver earlier in the season but has been limited to defense since returning from his Week 3 arm injury.

Porter has seven catches for 131 yards and a touchdown.

“Offensively, we're finally getting him back in the swing of things now that he's healthy and not having to wear that (elbow) brace anymore,” Walker said. “He's a kid who can play two sides of the ball. Where's he going to end up in college? You don't really know yet, but he's doing well at both and still has a year left. That makes him marketable for sure.”

Steelers connection

Porter isn't the only Steelers son in North Allegheny's lineup. Canyon Tuman, son of Jerame Tuman, plays tight end. King Gildon, son of Jason Gildon, plays defensive end. Also on the roster are Cade Hoke, Justus Gildon and Amos Porter, who is Joey Porter Jr.'s cousin. Hoke, a senior linebacker, is sidelined with an injury.

Final four for Raines

Pitt, Penn State, West Virginia and Florida long were considered to be Kwantel Raines' favorites, but the Aliquippa senior made it official Tuesday. He posted those four schools as his finalists on his Twitter account: @KwantelRaines.

The four-star safety has said he'll make a verbal commit Monday. Raines (6-2, 220) is rated as the 19th-best safety prospect by Rivals and No. 224 overall among all 2018 recruits.

Sorsdal picks W&M

Mt. Lebanon offensive tackle Colby Sorsdal committed this week to William and Mary, an FCS team in the Colonial Athletic Association.

Sorsdal (6-5, 285) had more than a dozen offers including Central Florida, UConn and a number from the Mid-American Conference.

Chris Harlan is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at charlan@tribweb.com or via Twitter @CHarlan_Trib.

Chris Harlan is a TribLive reporter covering sports. He joined the Trib in 2009 after seven years as a reporter at the Beaver County Times. He can be reached at charlan@triblive.com.

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