Friday, March 28, 2008

Blue White Roundtable: Spring Practice!

Spring Practice is finally here and with it comes my inane prattling about Penn State football! Along with me on this journey of poor grammar are my more skilled compatriots from around the Blue & White Blogosphere! Mike from BSD brings us the questions, ,y answers are below but please patronize these other fine PSU sites: TNL, RUTS, WWN, TNN, Tangled Up in White and Blue (long names are so out, you have to go for something short and sweet like: There is No Name On My Jersey!), Nittany Whiteout, and The Big Eleventh.
Let’s start with the ugly news. Chris Baker, Chris Bell, Phil Taylor, Knowledge Timmons, and Navorro Bowman are all sitting out the spring practice sessions. What impact will this have on the 2008 season?
Starting with Baker & Taylor, none. The D-line is stacked with talent and getting healthier everyday, they'll be fine even without these guys. For Bell, I will certainly miss talking about how he isn't living up to his potential on the field, however, I'll sate myself by talking about how he is squandering his talent. Bell won't be missed because he never really contributed in the first place. Timmons will probably be missed some. King's early departure has left PSU with a definite shortage of DBs. Losing someone with his speed is a blow but mainly because of the dearth of bodies to replace him. Bowman won't be missed, there are too many talented young LBs chomping at the bit.
Would you move Sean Lee to middle linebacker like Paul Posluszny in 2006 and Dan Connor in 2007?
I would not. Sean is a pure OLB so lets put him in a position where he can do the most damage. Also, it is exciting to have guys like Hull and Colasanti who could lend some real stability to the ILB position.
If Lee stays on the outside, who would you start at the other outside linebacker assuming Bowman is out of the picture?
Sales. He is experienced and looked great at times last year.
Which position on the field is our weakest link?
QB. Not because I believe either Devlin or Clarke are not talented. It is because the QB situation is so unsettled and because it is the most important position on the offensive side of the ball.
Who is your pony in the quarterback contro…uh, competition?
The guy who gives us the best chance to win. I have to think that Clarke is the front runner but it doesn't matter to whom they hand the keys to the car!
Name three players that absolutely have to step up their performance this spring?
AJ Wallace, J-King is gone and the DBs will have to pick up the slack. Evan Royster, he needs to keep up the production but avoid injuries. Production out of the RBs will be key as the QB becomes acclimated to the offense. Josh Hull, we need whoever steps into the ILB role to pickup where DC-40 left off. The PSU defense needs to continue to enjoy a dominant linebacking corps.
Lightning Round
Who is your pick to win the Red Worrell award given to the offensive player that shows the most improvement during spring practice?
Oh, well, I'll have to consult all my "inside observers". My guess would be: Stefphon Green. He is a guy who may not be "improved", but he is going to be a part of every Penn State fan's vocabulary by the end of the year.
Who is your pick for the Jim O’Hora award given to the defensive player that shows the most improvement?
AJ Wallace. We need him to play big and he will.
Your 2008 team captains are…?
Sean Lee. AQ Shipley, Derrick Williams.


1 comment: said...

Chris Bell will definitely a big loss. Its true we have 3 senior wideouts in Williams, Butler and Norwood, but Bell could have been the fourth in our new Spread HD offense. This not only gives him experience even if he doesn't get as many catches, but it does gives us a clear option beyond next year for 2009 when all 3 senior wideouts graduate. Thats why its a big loss. Without Bell in the lineup this year, means we will literally have nobody in 2009 and thats a scary, back to the Zack Mills era thought.