PSU news by
Penn State's student blog

Topics

About

Penn State Football Releases First Depth Chart

At long last, an official depth chart for the 2014 Penn State football team was released today. Most positions were already set, but there are a few interesting positions that jumped out.

On offense: 

  • One of the most interesting developments resides under center. Sophomore — and new captain — Christian Hackenberg is the No. 1 guy, but his backup spot was up for grabs. In what could be considered an upset, freshman Trace McSorley won the No. 2 spot over highly-touted freshman Michael O’Connor.
  • At tight end, true freshman Mike Gesicki is listed as the fourth option, behind sophomore Brent Wilkerson, who fills the vacant third tight end spot left by the injured Adam Breneman.
  • The starting wide receiver spots will be filled by sophomore Geno Lewis (X receiver), and redshirt freshman DaeSean Hamilton (Z receiver). True freshman wideouts Saeed Blacknall and Chris Godwin fill in as reserves at X and Z respectively, potentially in slot roles. Coach James Franklin emphasized the fact that many of his players will be cross trained at multiple positions, which will be evident in the wide receiving corps come Saturday.
  • Blue-chip recruit and resident speedster DeAndre Thompkins is listed fourth at the F receiver spot, behind sophomore Gregg Garrity and junior Matt Zanellato. Franklin noted that Thompkins is a player that he is very high on, but is not expecting to contribute much yet. He said that typically he does not believe in asking too much of a true freshman, and that Thompkins is a player that could receive a redshirt. However, Thompkins will be ready to contribute just as every other player on the roster.
  • The running back stable looks identical to last year, with seniors Bill Belton and Zach Zwinak manning the first two spots, followed by redshirt sophomore Akeel Lynch. All three players are different, and all three are expected to give defenses trouble. Not too many surprises on the offensive line, as many freshman are slotted into reserve roles due to lack of depth. Flexibility is once again emphasized, and many players will be counted on to contribute at multiple positions. The only position bearing the “OR” tag is left guard, where either sophomore Derek Dowrey or redshirt freshman Brendan Mahon will get the starting nod.

On defense: 

  • The defensive line will be anchored by redshirt junior end Deion Barnes, redshirt junior tackle Anthony Zettel, redshirt sophomore tackle Austin Johnson, and redshirt senior end C.J. Olaniyan. Nothing here comes as a major shock, as players like Zettel and Johnson were expected to contribute a great deal in the trenches.
  • Linebacker is in the same boat, as redshirt sophomore Nyeem Wartman, redshirt senior Mike Hull, and true sophomore Brandon Bell all get starting nods as anticipated. Redshirt sophomore Gary Wooten, who competed for a starting job, will be a key reserve at middle linebacker for Bob Shoop’s defensive unit. Sophomore Von Walker, who played running back and returned punts last season, makes the transition to outside linebacker for 2014. He bulked up in the offseason, and it payed dividends for him. He is listed second on the chart behind Bell, and will be expected to be a contributor all over the field, especially with the special teams unit. True freshman Jason Cabinda is another fresh face who could see playing time thanks to the great camp he had, as he is listed second behind Wartman.
  • The secondary is anchored by familiar faces in junior Jordan Lucas (cornerback), redshirt senior Ryan Keiser (free safety), and senior Adrian Amos (strong safety). The cornerback position opposite Lucas will be manned by either Trevor Willams or Da’Quan Davis. True freshman Grant Haley, who is listed as the second corner behind Jordan Lucas,  could play a nickel role in certain packages. Haley is also expected to see work as a kickoff return specialist.

On special teams:

  • Redshirt freshman punter Chris Gulla won the position battle over Dan Pasquariello and will replace the departed Alex Butterworth. Other than that, no major changes have been made. Akeel Lynch and Geno Lewis will be the primary kickoff returners, with Jordan Lucas and Jesse Della Valle tabbed as the punt returners.

The entire depth chart is below. Only four short days ’til kickoff in Dublin!

UCF Depth Chart by arobinsonpsu

About the Author

David Abruzzese

David is a senior from Rochester, NY, nestled right in beautiful Western New York. He is majoring in Broadcast Journalism, and as an avid sports fan, he passionately supports the Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres. He is the first Penn Stater from his family, and couldn’t be prouder to represent Penn State University. In his free time, he likes to alpine ski, and play golf. You can follow him on Twitter @abruz11, and can contact him via email at [email protected]

Comments

More by David

So Long, And Goodnight: David Abruzzese’s Senior Column

It’s been a hell of a ride, folks. Senior staffer David Abruzzese rides off into the sunset with his senior column.

Saquon Barkley Mum On NFL Future; Relishes Fiesta Bowl Opportunity

DOTD: Nittany Lion Catches Pass At Fiesta Bowl

Athletics

Tony Carr Experienced ‘Greatest Feeling Of His Life’ At NBA Draft

“Just to be able to hear my name called at the NBA Draft, it’s just a dream come true.” Penn State men’s basketball guard has reached the pinnacle of the sport — entering the NBA pro ranks after getting drafted Thursday night in Brooklyn by the New Orleans Pelicans. Carr, who had to wait around […]

Pelicans GM Excited To Bring In ‘Crafty’ Tony Carr

[VIDEO] New Orleans Pelicans Select Tony Carr In 2018 NBA Draft

Tony Carr First Nittany Lion Selected In NBA Draft Since 1999

Bundling Student Tickets And Offering Options: What Penn State Can Learn

Student Life

Student Farm To Commemorate Summer Solstice With Second Annual Celebration

Penn State’s Student Farm will celebrate the longest day of the year with tours and live music Thursday evening.

Penn State Love Stories: A Chance Meeting At Beaver Stadium

Virtual Reality: Changing The Game At Penn State

Plans Submitted For New KFC In State College

Developers have submitted preliminary land development plans to build a new KFC restaurant at 1780 S. Atherton St. in State College.

Pittsburgh-Based Burger Joint BRGR Opening State College Location

BRGR was able to strike a deal for the building in the past six months or so, as the new goal is to open Happy Valley location — the restaurant’s first outside of Pittsburgh — in early January 2019.

Bream Won’t Be Charged With Perjury

Tim Bream, the former live-in adviser for Beta Theta Pi fraternity, will not face a perjury charge for his testimony at a preliminary hearing in the case.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Don’t Like Penn State Student Ticket Policies? Change Them.

That potential lies as much in the hands of active, informed, and opinionated students as it does in those of the profit-driven athletic departments.

Send this to a friend