PSU news by
Penn State's student blog



Penn State’s Defense Regains Depth, Allows Three Points In B1G Opener

In case you haven’t heard, Penn State football took out Rutgers 28-3 in front of #103kStrong on Saturday night. On one side of the ball, three players combined for four rushing touchdowns and all of the Nittany Lions’ scoring. On the other, oft-overlooked side of the ball, the Nittany Lions’ defense outplayed its opponents start to finish.

Questions abounded after the season opener against Temple when it was announced that projected starting linebacker and leader of the defense, Nyeem Wartman-White, would miss the rest of the season. Before this game, safety Jordan Lucas announced that he would wear jersey No. 5 this season to honor the sidelined Wartman-White. Also announced before the game were the much-anticipated returns of Brandon Bell and Grant Haley. While Wartman-White’s loss can’t be ignored, he can be replaced by committee. And judging by the results of this game, it looks like that’s what’s happening.

“[Wartman-White] has such a positive attitude, his predicament, he’s already a leader being a senior and the oldest guy in our group, and just continues that role,” Bell said after the game. Wartman-White was out on the field before the game helping his team warm up. This is a cliche that fits nearly every team, but it’s especially true of this Penn State team — they all play for each other.

The unit’s cohesiveness off the field is only rivaled by its on-field results. In this game, Rutgers totaled 43 yards rushing (Penn State had 330 — but that’s not what this is about). Rutgers did throw for 251 yards through the air, 110 more than Penn State, but still totaled less than 300 yards total.

“It’s just the way we practice all throughout the week, do what the coaches ask of us,” Bell said. “We’re always confident, our practices are always up-tempo and they’re actually pretty hard. The coaches like to make practices hard so that it’s easier when the game comes.”

Marcus Allen led the team in solo tackles with seven, and was followed by Jordan Lucas. After the safeties were linebackers Bell and Troy Reeder, who is fresh off of a breakout performance in last week’s matchup with Buffalo. Linebacker U’s future, if this game was any indication, is in good hands.

“Troy Reeder is a very insatiable guy and he also studies a lot, so when you put those two together… He’s smart out there, he knows where to be, and he’s a football player,” Bell said. “We all saw it last Saturday — his first start in Beaver Stadium. He didn’t come out of nowhere, but he made a big splash.”

But Bell’s impact isn’t lost on himself, either. A solid performance against Temple was cut short and he was unable to play against Buffalo. Now, he’s back to being a key performer in Bob Shoop’s squad.

“It’s my first game in 2015 back in Beaver Stadium, so I was pumped up,” Bell said. “We  love it here. Not just here, but when you’re playing football you only get so many opportunities… 12, maybe 15 a year. We just try to have fun every time.”

And at the end of the day, the game wasn’t about any one player. They all played together, they gave up fewer than 300 yards, and they allowed one field goal. They forced three fumbles and picked off two passes. And as the team gets more experience together and gets its health back, the sky’s the limit for the dominant squad.

“It’s always good to get our depth back, I was glad to be out there and glad Grant had a chance to get out there,” Bell said. “I think we’re all getting to gel a little better.”

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.


More by Doug

Freshman 101: How To Buy Football Tickets

Tickets go on sale for graduate students on Monday, June 18, followed by seniors on Tuesday, juniors on Wednesday, sophomores on Thursday, and freshmen on Friday.

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

Report: James Franklin Is Only Mildly Excited For This Opportunity


Incoming Penn State Track & Field Athlete Kristian Marche Shot To Death In Philadelphia

The incident surrounding Marche’s death is “under investigation,” according to the Philadelphia police department.

Former Women’s Gymnastics Coach Files Lawsuit Against Penn State Over Handling Of Abuse Allegations

Men’s Soccer Trio, Reading United Win PDL Eastern Conference Title, Fall Short Of National Championship

Penn State Hockey’s Evan Barratt, Aarne Talvitie Participate In World Junior Summer Showcase

Ally McHugh Wins 400 Medley National Championship

Student Life

Penn State Parking Office Runs Into Student Permit Purchase Issues

Students were delayed hours on Tuesday afternoon while trying to purchase on-campus parking permits.

Girirajan Lab Seeks To Bridge The Gap Between Fly And Human Genomes

Join Onward State: Fall 2018 Application

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.

Join Onward State: Fall 2018 Application

Onward State is hiring for the fall semester and we’d love to have you join us.

Incoming Penn State Track & Field Athlete Kristian Marche Shot To Death In Philadelphia

The incident surrounding Marche’s death is “under investigation,” according to the Philadelphia police department.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Madden NFL 19 Ratings For Nittany Lions

For the second consecutive year, Sean Lee is the highest-rated Nittany Lion in the Madden video game.

Send this to a friend