Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Paterno Talks: Mo, Abe, Quarless, Illinis, and Beyond!

Paterno held his weekly press conference. Below, I have the highlights of Joe's interaction with the press. However, if you are hardcore and you want to read Joe's presser for yourself you can find it here.

Are Abe and Mo Gonna Play?
Well, we'll see. They took practiced yesterday. I'm not so sure what I'm going to do the rest of the week.
Yeah. They are gonna play. I've been saying this for a while. I don't think they will "start" for whatever it matters. But you can bet that Evans and Koroma will be in the rotation.

Is Juice good?
I think Williams played very, very well against us last year. He's obviously better this year. He's been a little bit more consistent. I think they've depended on him a little bit more this year than last year. They don't have that other back, (Rashard) Mendenhall, that was with them last year.

So, I think that they're depending more and more on the quarterback. And I he's doing a really good job for them. He's a big kid. He runs well. I think he's made good progress.

I can live with Juice completing passes. He isn't accurate enough to play a big game mistake free. The key is to get pressure on the QB. Enough pressure will make anyone crack.

Illinois comes off a bye-week this week, your thoughts?

I'm not quite sure what you mean by that. If I had my preference, I'd rather have a bye week. But it doesn't always turn out to be an advantage. We've had bye weeks and didn't play well the week after the bye week. So if we get licked, it's because they're a better football team or they do a better job than we do. I don't think it will be because it's an off week.

Now if they have some people banged up that wouldn't be able to play, and because of the week off they can play, that might be helpful to them. I'm not threatened very much about that, really.

This was actually an informative question. I had no idea Illinois was coming off a bye-week. I think this is nothing but an advantage for Illinois. The bye will give them an extra week to scheme for PSU's offense. Penn State hasn't had to play their starters late enough into games for fatigue to be a factor, however, if the Zooker was going to cook up a scheme to stop the offense this would be his shot.

Bowman and Maybin are good, right?

They are both good. They make some mistakes, obviously. You wouldn't see the bad things. You see the good things. But I think they both played well (vs. Temple). They're getting better each week. They're both good athletes, and they like to play and they hustle. They have a chance to be really good.

But they've got to get into situations with people that know a little bit more about them and pay more attention to them. Maybe the teams we've played so far haven't done that. But I thought both of them played well Saturday.

This means Joe is fucking psyched up about these kids. Of course they need to keep getting better, however, they are ready to contribute right away. Very exciting!

11 fumbles in three games is a lot, right?

It's a tremendous concern. You don't address it just in the middle of the season. We address it every day. We have ball-carrying drills and take away drills. It worries me. It really does. I don't think it's good putting the ball on the ground that many times.

We talk about it, we practice it. As I said, we set up drills where the kid carrying the football has to protect it with one or two guys trying to pull it out, that kind of thing. But I don't know what else to do.

Eleven fumbles?!?! Seriously? It didn't seem like that many! I'm suddenly terribly concerned about turnovers. It might be cliche but winning the turnover battle is an important element to the scrapple that is winning.

Is A.J. Wallace's hamstring still bothering him?

No, there was a little bit of a misunderstanding I think there. I said he wasn't in there in the second half. I called down to Tom Bradley. I said, "Tom, get Wallace in there." He said, "his hamstring's bothering him." I looked down there and he's in on a couple of the return teams. I think he's okay. I really do. He practiced yesterday and he looked okay.

This is huge. It is terribly important that Wallace stay healthy. The secondary is going to need to play well against Illinois on Saturday.

Is Devon Still out for the rest of the year?

No, I think he can still come back. That would be great because he's already given up one year. But that's a guess. I don't think our doctors could tell you yes or no, and obviously, I can't. But I'm hoping he will be back.

Fuck. Yeah! Still could be back? That is awesome! The defensive will be back to being completely stacked in time to face a very physical Michigan State team.

I can't wait for the biggest game of the year!



Anonymous said...

11 fumbles, but luckily only 4 lost. We wouldn't have put up nearly as many points if we'd lost all of them.

jd said...

wait a second.....

Juice played well? why was he taken out of the game then? o yeah, we figured him out. The trick was making him throw the ball. Enter Morelli and multiple giveaways....that loss still bothers me.

Illinois is toast and they know it.