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Tag:Penn State
Posted on: January 2, 2011 7:24 pm
 

Robert Bolden to transfer from PSU

Posted by Tom Fornelli

It seems that quarterbacks on the bench at Penn State don't enjoy their time there very much.  For weeks it's been reported that backup quarterback Kevin Newsome, after losing the quarterback job to Matt McGloin and Robert Bolden, wouldn't be returning to Penn State next season.  The fact he didn't make the trip to Tampa for the bowl game basically confirmed it.

Well now it appears that Robert Bolden isn't going to stick around either.  Bolden's father, Robert Bolden Sr, told Lions247 that his son is looking to transfer.

"It's true, he's looking to leave Penn State,"said Bolden's father. "He's notified the coaches, that's as far as it's gone so far. We're waiting on the next step now."

"They're not looking for him to leave, they don't want him to leave, but he no longer wants to play at Penn State. He's not happy at Penn State currently. If it was up to me, he definitely [would leave], without a doubt. He's definitely made it known that he does not want to be there anymore."

Which means that Matt McGloin won't have much competition for the starting job next season, though don't sleep on freshman quarterback Paul Jones.  Considering McGloin just threw five interceptions against Florida in the Outback Bowl, that probably doesn't leave Penn State fans feeling all too comfortable.

Bolden started seven games for the Nittany Lions this season, throwing for 1,360 yards, 5 touchdowns and 7 interceptions.  He had been one of the prize members of Penn State's 2010 recruiting class.
Posted on: January 2, 2011 4:03 pm
 

Marvin Lewis on Pitt's list

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Maybe Pitt can just consider the Mike Haywood hire a practice run.  A day after the Mike Haywood Era -- and what a memorable era it was -- came to an end following Haywood's arrest, names are starting to pop up as possible replacements.  One of whom is currently patrolling an NFL sideline this weekend.

Marvin Lewis's contract with the Cincinnati Bengals expires after the NFL season, and all indications out of Cincinnati is that he won't be back with the team next season. Of course, that doesn't mean he won't have a shot to be an assistant coach in the NFL next year, but it's possible he could land a head coaching gig at Pitt according to a report on Pro Football Talk.

According to the report, Lewis is on a short-list of candidates the school has in mind to replace Haywood, and Lewis does have a history with the school. He spent three seasons as an assistant at Pitt, along with guys like Jon Gruden and Mike McCarthy.  Now, just because Pitt has interest in Lewis, that doesn't mean he'll be interested in Pitt.

It's unknown who else is on this short list of Pitt's, but Penn State head coach Joe Paterno has an idea who's name should be on it.  His long time defensive coordinator Tom Bradley.  Paterno told The Morning Call that Bradley would be a very good candidate for the job, as he's an excellent coach and has strong recruiting ties in Pittsburgh and throughout the state of Pennsylvania.

Over the years many people have seen Bradley as the likely successor to Paterno at Penn State, but given the fact that he recently went after the Temple job that Steve Addazio landed, he may no longer feel as if he has a future at Penn State without Paterno.
Posted on: January 1, 2011 5:20 pm
Edited on: January 1, 2011 5:20 pm
 

Bowl Grades: Outback Bowl

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Urban Meyer goes out with a win and a complimentary Bloomin' Onion as Florida defeats Penn State 37-24

Florida


Offense: Florida scored 37 points on Saturday, but don't think that means the Gators offense finally figured things out.  Fourteen of those points came courtesy of the defense and special teams.  Meanwhile, the two offensive touchdowns Florida did manage came on two drives totaling 40 yards thanks to Penn State turnovers.

In total, the Florida offense managed only 287 yards on the day, with its trio of quarterbacks combining to complete 14-of-27 passes for 102 yards.  If there was a standout player for Gators on offense, it was Omarius Hines who had 59 all-purpose yards and a touchdown.  Other than that, there wasn't much to celebrate on offense.

If the Gators were to hand out an offensive MVP for the game, it would likely go to kicker/punter Chas Henry or safety Ahmad Black. Grade:D

Defense: Thankfully for the Gators, while they still don't have an offense, the defense made the trip down south to Tampa on Saturday.  Ahmad Black had a huge day in his final game as a Gator, including the deciding pick-six in the final minutes that put an end to Penn State's chances.  All in all the Gators forced five turnovers on the game, all via the interception, and held Penn State to only seven points in the second half.  Grade: B+

Coaching: You'd think that with over a month passing between Florida's last game and this one, the coaching staff might have been able to come up with an offensive game plan that wasn't as terrible as the one we'd seen all season.  Unfortunately, even though Steve Addazio accepted the head coaching job at Temple, he stuck around Gainesville for this game.  Still, since it was Urban Meyer's final game, and his beloved special teams unit got him a touchdown, the Gators staff still gets a decent grade.  Grade: B-

Penn State


Offense: To put it simply, Penn State's offense cost them a win on Saturday.  Particularly Matt McGloin, who on one play would make a throw that completely surpassed your expectations, and on the next would throw a pass that completely defied logic.  McGloin threw five interceptions on the day.  Five.

You're not going to win many games turning the ball over that often.

Penn State's offense actually out-gained Florida's offense by 70 yards in this one, and Evan Royster rushed for 99 yards, but the interceptions and McGloin's overall decision-making killed the Nittany Lions.  Grade: F

Defense: You can't pin this one on the Penn State defense at all.  It did it's job and smothered a lackluster Florida offense, but the Nittany Lions found themselves in too many bad spots thanks to the turnovers.  Really, the defense played well given the circumstances, holding Florida to field goals a lot of the time.  Nobody on this Penn State defense has anything to be ashamed of following this game, and Matt McGloin owes everybody on this unit a free meal. Grade: B

Coaching: I did not like what Joe Paterno and the Penn State coaching job did on offense in this game.  I'm sorry, but when my quarterback has had trouble with deeper routes all season long and is turning the ball over frequently, I'm not going to drop him back and have him throw 42 times.  It just doesn't make any sense.  If you feel you have to throw so much, then run plays with shorter routes.  Yes, McGloin had a bad game, but his coaches didn't do him a lot of favors. Grade: D+

Final Grade



This game was not pretty.  Not at all.  Still, given the action going on around the state of Florida and in Texas elsewhere on Saturday at the same time, at least this one had a bit of drama in it at the end.  It's for that reason, and that reason only, that this grade is even this high.  Grade: C+
Posted on: December 31, 2010 8:46 pm
 

CBS Bowl Bonanza: Outback Bowl

Posted by Tom Fornelli

The Basics: Florida (7-5) vs. Penn State (7-5), Jan.1, 1pm ET

Why You Should Watch: Well, first of all, you should watch this game because it'll be starting around the same time you're finally waking up out of your New Year's Eve haze.  Nothing like some football to help you shake the cobwebs out of your brain.  Oh, and it's also the final time you will have a chance to see Urban Meyer nearly suffer a heart attack on a Florida sideline.  Not to mention, depending on who you want to believe, it could also be the final time that Joe Paterno ever graces a sideline.

Keys to Victory for Florida: You could question how Florida will approach this game given everything that's gone on in Gainesville over the last month, but I don't think motivation is going to be a problem.  There's no way these Gators want to send Urban Meyer out with a loss.  To do this, well, the Gators will have do so something they haven't done all season.

Find some consistency on offense.  Whether it's John Brantley through the air, or Trey Burton on the ground, whoever is at quarterback for Florida is going to have to make some plays against this Penn State defense.  That means the Gators offensive line, which has been pretty disappointing this year, is going to need to step up the protection.  When Brantley is back there he tends to make dumb decisions when facing pressure and has a hard time reading coverage.

The best way to help Brantley would be to get the ground game going with Mike Gillislee, Emmanuel Moody, Jeff Demps and Chris Rainey.  Penn State has had some problems with the run this season, and the Gators should watch the game film of the Penn State game against Illinois and copy Illinois' game plan.  Maybe Ron Zook can finally win a bowl game for Florida after all these years.

Keys to Victory for Penn State: Florida is faster and more athletic than Penn State.  The best way for Penn State to counter this will be to attack, attack and attack some more on defense.  Blitz John Brantley like there is no tomorrow and force him to make decisions he's not ready to make. Also, as I mentioned earlier, the Nittany Lions need to tighten things up against the run.

When Penn State has the ball it should look to exploit the Gators a bit in the secondary.  Yes, Evan Royster should still get plenty of carries to soften up the Florida defense, but the Gators don't have Janoris Jenkins in this game and he's not an easy player to replace.  Now, the problem here is that as good as Matt McGloin has been, he's not very effective on deep routes.  Which means that Penn State should look to attack Florida on shorter routes like slants and hitches. 

Finally, it will be important for Royster and the offensive line to have move the ball against the Florida run defense.  Royster had a couple of lackluster games against tough run defenses like Alabama and Ohio State this season, and for Penn State to have a legit chance in this game, he's going to have to produce.

The Outback Bowl is like: one of those Rolling Stones farewell concerts.  You know that even though they claim it's the last time you'll ever see them performing, they're going to come back eventually.  Yes, Urban Meyer may be leaving Florida to spend time with the family and tend to his health, but do you really believe a man that immersed in football is never coming back?  I don't.
Posted on: December 28, 2010 10:37 am
 

JoePa's wife says her husband isn't sick

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Yesterday a couple of Penn State players came forward to say that the rumors about Joe Paterno coaching his last game on New Year's Day in the Outback Bowl against Florida were false.  You would think that as players on the team, they might have an inclination if that were the case.  Of course, there's still somebody who would know better than the players, and that would be the woman who is married to Paterno, his wife Sue.

Well, much like the players, she denies the rumors.  In an interview with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Sue Paterno called the rumors "lies" and said that her husband's health "is just fine."  You'd think that would put an end to the speculation right there, but she did leave the window open a bit when she was asked directly whether or not her husband would be back on the Penn State sideline next season.

"We haven't talked about it," said Sue Paterno.

Her daughter, Mary Kay Hort, was then quick to add that the Outback Bowl is not Paterno's "planned last game."  Which is evident by the fact that back in November Paterno said he'd be coming back to coach in 2011 and finish out the final year of his contract. The possibility still remains that the school may ask Paterno to step down, and Sue Paterno did say that her husband is yet to talk to anyone at the school about returning next season.

Which just means that while everyone who would know can deny that Paterno is coaching his final game next week, the rumor will persist.
Posted on: December 27, 2010 12:06 pm
 

PSU players deny Paterno retirement rumors

Posted by Tom Fornelli

The Outback Bowl will be the final game Urban Meyer coaches for the Florida Gators.  If you were to listen to some rumors over the holiday weekend, however, Meyer might not be the only coach spending his last game on the sideline in Tampa on New Year's.  According to a report on College Football Talk, sources within the athletic department at Penn State maintain that following the Outback Bowl, Joe Paterno will retire.

The apparent reason for it is not performance based, but rather Paterno's health.

Whether or not these rumors are true, you can't really be sure.  The idea of Paterno retiring isn't exactly crazy considering the man is 84 years old.  Still, if he is retiring, nobody has told his players yet, as a few have come forward over the last few days to claim that the rumors are false.

"There's been a few things that have been said, but we're around Coach every day," Brett Brackett told the St. Petersburg Times. "There's no truth to these rumors at all. We experience him every day. ... Nobody understands how hands-on he really is, so we really know what Coach does, and when those rumors go around they more anger us than anything because we get to experience him every day."

Of course, it's totally possible that this plan has been put in place and nobody has told the players yet.  Still, I'm not sure I believe it myself.  Paterno has already gone on the record publicly and stated he plans on returning in 2011, and let's be honest, if he wants to, he will.  Even if his health is getting worse, the fact of the matter is that even though Paterno is the figurehead at Penn State, his coordinators and assistants have been running things for the last few years.

Next year wouldn't be any different.
Posted on: December 23, 2010 1:59 pm
 

Kevin Newsome doesn't travel to Tampa with PSU

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Remember a few weeks ago when there were rumors that Penn State quarterback Kevin Newsome was likely going to transfer rather than return to compete with Matt McGloin and Robert Bolden?  Yeah, well, they have a bit more credence now.

According to a report in The Patriot News, Newsome did not accompany the team on its trip to Tampa.
Two sources close to the Penn State football program told The Patriot-News earlier today that reserve quarterback Kevin Newsome did not make the trip to Florida for Penn State's Jan. 1 Outback Bowl game with Florida in Tampa.
The news hardly qualifies as a surprise. Earlier this month, there were internet reports that Newsome, the No. 3 quarterback behind starter Matt McGloin and backup Rob Bolden, was unhappy with his role and considering a transfer.

Those don't sound like the actions of a player who plans on returning and fighting for a job next season.  The rumors started earlier in the month when Joe Paterno said during the Outback Bowl media days that he couldn't be sure whether or not Newsome would be returning next season.  Which, makes sense for Newsome, because considering everything that's happened at quarterback in State College this season, it seems pretty clear that Newsome isn't the quarterback of the future.

So if he wants to see the field while he still has any eligibility, he's going to have to move on.
Posted on: December 23, 2010 11:12 am
 

Ricky Dobbs wins Lowe's Senior CLASS Award

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

The Lowe's Senior CLASS Award is a bit different from the rest of the honors on the college football postseason, as it specifically takes into account an athlete's off-field activities as well -- to quote the release announcing this year's winner, "a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition."

So it makes sense that this year's award went to Navy quarterback Ricky Dobbs. Dobbs is arguably the greatest option quarterback of the past decade or so, an honorable mention All-American who totaled more than 2,000 yards of offense this season and set a single-season record for rushing touchdowns by a quarterback as a junior with 27.

But Dobbs is also due to graduate this sping with a degree in general science from one of the FBS's most challenging academic programs, and still finds the time to be involved with various community activities (including helping at multiple football camps in the Annapolis area). After graduation, he'll be serving (naturally) in the U.S. Navy. Tonight's the final game of his career as he takes on San Diego State in the waterlogged Poinsettia Bowl; it's your final chance to watch one of college football's best players in action, and we strongly suggest you take advantage of the opportunity. (Need a preview? The blog's got you covered .)

Also making the Lowe's Senior Class Award All-America first team: Northern Illinois defensive end Jake Coffman, Auburn center Ryan Pugh, Penn State guard Stefan Wisnewski, and Florida State quarterback Christian Ponder. Congratulatiosn are in order for all.
 
 
 
 
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