This week's Blue and White Roundtable is brought to you in a collaborated effort by Penn State Clips (main questions) and W. F. Yurasko (Lightening Round). See, we Penn State bloggers work together in a synergistic, symbiotic manner… or something. I couldn't find any awesome pics of hot ninja chicks today so I give you this:
Awesome Machine gun Gopher!
How does Penn State stop the Minnesota offense (a/k/a Eric Decker)?
Why in God's name would I answer that in any way? You sound like a Minnesota assistant coach. "What are you going to do with Decker?" You know, I don't know. We may put four corners on him, all right, let everybody else run for touchdowns. I don't know what we're going to do yet. We've got to look at some things. It's Tuesday. We've had one practice. We had a long discussion this morning as to some of the things they do.
Alrighty then. Mr. Paterno's comments aside, they obviously will have to have some sort of double scheme for Decker. He's really the entire offense: he has 56% of the teams total receiving yards, 47% of all catches, and 5 of the teams 7 receiving touchdowns. He's ranked 1st in the big ten and 9th nationally. So Paterno can say what he wants but the numbers don't lie, when a player is half of his team's offense and ranked nationally in the top 10 you have to take him out of his game. Double team him the entire game and make someone else beat you.
Is Minnesota's defense as awful as their statistical rankings make it look?
Their statistics really don't look all that bad. They're middle of the road in the Big Ten: 6th in scoring, 6th in pass efficiency, 7th in pass defense and 6th in turnover margin. What really hurts them is they are pretty pedestrian against the run (9th in conference giving up 162+ yards per game) and that plays right into Penn State's hands. Look for them to do the same thing most every opponent has done against Penn State… blitz, blitz, blitz, blitz, and then… blitz.
Mid-point of the season, which of the PSU freshmen do you project as future stars?
Well the obvious choice is Stephon Morris who started getting significant playing time at corner right out of the gate because of suspensions, injuries and such. He's proven himself so much that he's earned the second corner position when Penn State is in the nickel and D'Anton Lynn moves over to nickelback. That and just look at how Paterno raves about him:
Q. Halfway through the season, how would you rate Stephon Morris' progress as a true freshmen?
I think he's done really well.
Wow, that's some praise from Joe!
This is just a hunch but I also think Justin Brown is going to be something special. If the coaches thought enough of him to put him back at punt returner instead of [insert slow, sure handed safety here] then they must think he has some explosive skills.
Where were you when Minnesota got lucky because Penn State did not put them away at Homecoming '99?
Helping my brother move – thankfully.
Will Minnesota open with an on-side kick?
No, Penn State will win the coin toss (ha, see what I did there!?!?)
What is your best homecoming memory (that you can say in this forum at least :p)?
Ahhh… homecoming is overrated.