November 4, 2010

Blue & White Roundtable: The Purple Drank edition

Northwestern's sippin' on some sizzurp
After a solid win against Michigan, Penn State takes on a spunky Northwestern team sitting at a respectable 6-2, although their biggest win came against Indiana. Penn State should win this game but Northwestern has a solid chance and they always beat someone when you least expect it *cough-Iowa-cough*. This week's questions are brought to you by the fine fellas over at JoePa's Doghouse and they actually made me think this week, which means I actually had to work at these. Bad dogs!!

Matt McGloin played a very good game. He made some big-time throws, managed the game, and didn't make the critical mistake. That said, as long as Rob Bolden is medically cleared, he should be the starter now and forever. So, with that out of the way, here we go…

1) Congratulations to Evan Royster for breaking the all-time Penn State rushing record. Where do you rank him compared to the PSU running backs you have seen play live?

Really, the rushing record is a matter of circumstance more than a measure of Royster's ability. I'm not saying Royster isn't talented, he just doesn't go down in the history of Penn State running backs like a Lydell Mitchell or a Blair Thomas. Royster was thrust into action in his freshman year because there really was no one else so he's had the privilege of four years to set the record, off the top of my head I don't think any of the backs in the top 10 had that privilege. I would say that Royster ranks about the same place Tony Hunt did in the annals of Penn State backs. Not to mention his lack of production this season has kind of put a damper on the Royster lover train.

2) Okay, I guess we need to have one QB question. Will we see Kevin Newsome get any significant playing time this year? Where do you think he will be in 2011?

I don't think we'll see much of Newsome for the rest of the season and I wouldn't be surprised if he's in a different uniform come next season. I feel bad for the kid, he got injured at the worst possible time which allowed McGloin an opening and he's run away with it.

3) Against Michigan, Nate Cadogan was used as a "TE" in some goal line situations. What other outside the box ideas (offense or defense) can you come up with to provide additional sparks?

I would love to see a split backfield with Silas Redd and Royster. It would give the defense something else to think about and with Royster's pass catching ability (where did that go this year anyway?) you could motion Evan out and put the defense in a bad situation: do you cover him with a linebacker and risk a big play either by pass to Royster or a draw/run to Redd or do you start the play off in a nickel and risk being outmanned on straight up running plays.

4) Which lifted curse was most satisfying: Royster converting a 4th & 1, Graham Zug making big-time catches, offensive success in the red zone, or PSU winning as underdog? Do you think it will carry over for the remainder of the season?

The 4th & 1 was huge because Even was stopped but he wouldn't go down and with incredible second-effort he got the first. I haven't seen that kind of grit from Royster all season, I hope it's a sign of things to come. I think the red zone woes are behind Penn State now and hopefully the coaches will keep the aggressive play-calling up, the Michigan defense was on their heels on day long.

5) Whether you were at this game or not, we've all had to put up with douchebag Michigan fans. Give me your best encounter with such a jerk.

Honestly, outside the Interwebs I haven't come across a jackass Michigan fan ever. Most have been humble and polite. Now if you want to talk Ohio State, well I watched my buddy knock out an Ohio State fan cold after a Penn State home loss, and believe me, he deserved it.

Kibbles N Bits

1) If you had to choose, would you rather have JoePa get his 400th win at home this Saturday against Northwestern or next week in front of stunned Buckeyes?

Definitely at home no matter who it is.

2) Northwestern has given up more sacks than any team in the Big Ten. Penn State has recorded the second fewest. I'm setting the over/under at 1.5. What say you?

OVER – our defensive line is starting to show life.

3) You have to admit that Northwestern has a pretty ugly color combination. Let's throw them a bone. What's your most prized purple possession?

I had an iridescent dark purple shirt I used to wear out to the bars when I was a young lad. I know what you're thinking and yeah I looked fucking sharp!


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