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I want to give some props to these guys including the OL coach, Mac. Tremendous improvement over the season. I was really impressed with how these guys manned up and muscled up against a strong run defense last night. I was shocked at how we were able to run between the tackles. It has been a long time since we've seen our Oline manhandle a top run defense. The future is bright with 3 returning starters. We just need Gress, Cadogan or someone else to step up at RT, next year.
This post has been edited 2 times, most recently by lion95 20 months ago
The best part of Mac is that he was able to get 7,8,9, guys quality game reps in scenario's where the game was still in doubt. The play did not dip that much either when other guys got reps. That is going to pay dividends so much next year and beyond if he continues to be able to do that.
blowing holes in wiscky d line.... that was AWESOME
Mac and Fitz have done a great job. Excited to see what another year w/ Fitz will do to some guys. I'm supremely confident in the interior of the line for the foreseeable future (Urschel, Howle, Dieffenbach, Mangiro, Stanko, Laurent, and Mahon), but tackle will be an issue for another year or two. Smith will be fine but concerned about Gress and lack of depth behind him (Cadogen, Blanchard, Shrive). I think Hartman and Nelson have lots of potential but both need at least a year or two to develop... A JUCO OT would be a godsend for the next two years... EDIT--A good JUCO OT would be a godsend...
This post was edited by Ehoffman 20 months ago
"Penn State has taken a lot of punches in the last six months and it's time to punch back" - BOB
Tackle is a huge issue. Gress is not quick enough to play outside. I have to give credit to Farrell. He played better than I thought he could.
I'm waiting for Shrive to finally blossom. I hope he has a great season next year.
...and if you're not down with that, then I got 2 words for ya.."suck it!!"
I wouldn't really say there were many blown holes in the line. What you had were occupied defenders that could not stop ZZ as he hammered through the line, bouncing off of and rumbling over tacklers along the wa y - while ALWAYS falling forward for an extra 1.5 yds per carry. If we were blowing holes in the line, Zordich would have also had good runs. Bottom line is that the O-Line did pretty well, but ZZ is the difference maker.
I don't mean to stir up trouble...but it just goes to show you how incredibly weak we were in coaching in multiple areas the past 10+ years. O-line and quarterback the most obvious of those. Most of us knew that already, but in 1 year, both were light years ahead of where they have been for years!!
One area we need to work on is missed blocking assignments on the OL. Especially in Pass protection. All year long, defenders were allowed unfettered access to the QB due to missed blocking assignments, someone not picking up the blitz, etc. And many times, these faux pas' stopped promising drives. But overall, I was pleasantly surprised with the OL performance, especially in our running success against Wisky!
October 12, 2013. PSU 43 - UM 40 (4 OT). Unfortunately this fan wasn't around long enough to see it!
In fairness, on many occassions we had backs that did not pick up their assignments. ZZ missed a few Saturday. But we also put ourselves in some formations where there simply are not enough blockers. 5 wide, no back set for example. personally, i hate that formation because i just don't think it is that productive for us. Anyway, definitely some issues this year on the OL in terms of missed assignments. But also others had issues as well.
Smith, Diff, Howle/Mangino, Urschel are all going to be very solid next year....RT now..................................................................................
In comparison to recent years OL performance this group was a pretty good upgrade with room for improvement. McWhorter earned his salt this year.
Gress was hyped in the preseason as part of the new strength and conditioning program because he gained notable size in just 9 months. To his credit, he put in the work and really did come out this season with a new build. Unfortunately, it did nothing for his quickness or footwork. We need someone step up opposite Smith. We could do worse than Gress and if he is the best we can find, he'll hold his own. At the same time, he's going to be a liability in most games and something that the offensive coaches are going to scheme for. Lord knows the opposing defensive coaches are going to try to exploit him with speed rushers.
I completely agree on Farrell. I remember looking at him early in his career and thinking he was huge standing on the sideline, but he never saw the field. The last 2 seasons he's done more than hold his own out there. He really impressed me.
Cadogan and Shrive are the other 2 that confused me. We all know the hype around shrive and most of the time, even if guys rated that high don't pan out as great ones, they do alright if they put in the effort and stay out of trouble. Yet, during his first 3 years in the program, he's looked completely lost out there. He's a hard worker and loves PSU so it doesn't seem to a case of effort. Cadogan has the size and looks like he has good quickness, but is just no where to be found. I'd say that I'm hopeful at least one of these guys will step up, but I've been saying that for years at this point.
Either way, a bunch of guys got real snaps this year and we return a lot of them. I think the OL could be pretty good next year.
This post was edited by spud358 20 months ago
Could Gilliam play OT?
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