PSU news by
Penn State's student blog

Topics

About

Saquon Barkley Seizes The Spotlight With Electric Performance Against Buffalo

Penn State beat a MAC team by two scores at home to climb back to a .500 record. In an otherwise standard win, true freshman running back Saquon Barkley emerged as one of Penn State’s most fun players to watch.

Buffalo safety Ryan Williamson, meet the ground:

In the spring, James Franklin told the media that Barkley had a habit of hurdling people. No one expected the kid from the Lehigh Valley to show off that skill on one of his first opportunities — well, except his fellow backs.

“Yeah I saw that, once that hole opened up I knew he was gonna do it,” Akeel Lynch said after the game. “He’s talking about it all the time, he says, ‘If the safety comes up I’m gonna hurdle him.'”

Barkley became the first true freshman at Penn State to rush for 100 yards in a game since, ahem, Silas Redd against Northwestern in 2010. He and Brandon Polk became the first true freshmen to score in the same game for the Nittany Lions since 2005. When all was said and done, the backup running back had rushed 12 times for 115 yards and a score, with a long run of 33 yards and a 9.6 yard average. For any back at any level, those are great numbers.

“He showed those things in practice throughout camp, he showed those things this week, and now he’s showing it in the game,” Franklin praised. “I think his ability will continue to grow and I think the offensive line will continue to grow. When we have guys making plays like that, it’s amazing, just like a punt returner or kick returner, you got somebody back there that can make something happen, it makes people block better.”

When the team’s first depth chart came out a week before the Temple game, Barkley was listed behind Lynch, Nick Scott, and Mark Allen. Beyond Lynch, the ranking didn’t necessarily matter, but to list him last is still an odd decision — especially once you see what he’s capable of. Now that the secret’s out, Franklin, his staff, the fans, and everyone who cares about Penn State football know that he has the potential to be something really special.

“I think we’ve got some backs that we feel good about and that we can win with, but yeah we’re gonna need to continue to develop Saquon,” Franklin said. “I think his ability to make people miss and to break tackles… You guys watch him as a runner, he doesn’t run like a freshman. He’s making people miss and he’s also breaking tackles, and you usually don’t get that combination in a freshman. They’re usually either one or the other.”

An uneventful debut against Temple made this performance all the more perfect — except for one thing.

On Barkley’s hurdle, Lynch laughed after the game, “He should have scored.”

About the Author

Doug Leeson

Doug is a sophomore and Onward State's Assistant Managing Editor. Dislikes: popcorn, Rutgers, and a low #TimberCount. Likes: "Frozen," Rec Hall, and you. Contact him via email at [email protected] or on Twitter @DougLeeson.

Comments

More by Doug

Freshman 101: How To Buy Football Tickets

Tickets go on sale for graduate students and seniors on Monday, June 20, followed by juniors on Tuesday, sophomores on Wednesday, then freshmen on Thursday.

Pork State: Meet Sir Remington, State College’s Most Interesting Pet

Report: James Franklin Is Only Mildly Excited For This Opportunity

Athletics

North Dakota Interested In Playing Against Penn State Hockey In Nashville

North Dakota is working towards an agreement that will see its hockey team play against Penn State in Nashville during the 2020-21 season.

Former Cal Swimmer Says She Emailed Sandy Barbour About Sexual Harassment Claims

Max Sauve Commits To Penn State Hockey

Penn State Women’s Volleyball Releases 2018 Schedule

Penn State Hoops Alumnus Joonas Suotamo’s Journey To Becoming Chewbacca Featured On ESPN’s ‘E:60’

Student Life

Penn State Love Stories: A Chance Meeting On A Service Trip

When Abby Wilt went on a service trip to Nassau, Bahamas, she had no idea she’d meet the love of her life.

10 Questions With 2019 Class Gift Director Tom Beeby

Career Services To Launch Integrated Career Management & Recruiting Platform

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.

State Theatre Recognized As A State College Historic Site

As it approaches the 80th anniversary of its opening, the State Theatre has been recognized as a State College historic site.

Penn State Love Stories: A Chance Meeting On A Service Trip

When Abby Wilt went on a service trip to Nassau, Bahamas, she had no idea she’d meet the love of her life.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

10 Questions With 2019 Class Gift Director Tom Beeby

Tom Beeby will serve as the 2019 Class Gift Executive Director.

Send this to a friend