The Blue & White Roundtable has been somewhat ignored by the Penn State bloggers of late, what with the Big Ten Roundtable and various other adventures but Zombie Nation was kind enough to throw together some questions and I'm happy to answer. Even if they other guys don't answer it's always good to check around for their analysis on all things Penn State.
Penn State has the best scoring offense (55.3 ppg) in the Big Ten, and top-five nationally. Of course, this has been against two bad teams and a mediocre Oregon State squad. This week's Temple game should be another 40-plus game for the PSU offense. That being said, do you think this has been a fluke so far? Or is the Spread HD for real?
An accidental stroke of luck.
I would not characterize the offense as a fluke by any means. Are the numbers inflated because of easy competition? Sure, they'll go down when they start conference play but the pieces are in place for this offense to score. Coming into the season the only question mark was quarterback and Penn State has two that are already better than the guy that ran the offense last year (I refuse to type his name anymore). The offensive line is as solid as any unit in the Big Ten, every week a different wide receiver has a big game, and Evan Royster is a fantastic combination of power and speed. They won't keep churning out 55 point games but they will score on just about anyone in the Big Ten.
If Maurice Evans and Abe Koroma are convicted, what are the chances Joe Paterno will play either by the Illinois game? What message does it send to the team, and the nation, if both players are given light punishments? Conversely, what if the punishments are seemingly too severe, like dismissal?
If both are back for the Illinois game it sends a very clear message to the rest of this team – If you're a good player and you get in trouble you won't sit out any significant playing time. From a legal standpoint, they probably will get something like community service that's really not even part of the issue its Joe's reaction that will be closely contested. I don't think you'll see them dismissed from the team I think that's a tad harsh considering this is the first time both have run afoul of the law but going too light validates what people have been saying about Joe becoming too soft.
Leadership has been a huge part of this year's team's ability to move past distractions. Who has to really step up this week and keep this team focused? How does the coaching staff figure into this, or should they just let the players handle it by themselves?
There isn't much the coaching staff can do the players have all been told about the troubles that await them at Penn State. It's up to the players themselves to police and remind each other they need to stay out of trouble and that's not happening with this team. At this point I'm not even sure anyone can keep these kids from screwing up, I swear this team is loaded with players that don't have an ounce of common sense.
Penn State throws its first interception this week?
Yes – bound to happen sometime.
Evan Royster's YPC vs. Temple?
10.5 - he'll break off a huge one and leave the game in the second quarter with a gaudy average.
Coke or Pepsi?
Coke… or Pepsi – whichever the restaurant has.