PSU news by
Penn State's student blog

Topics

About

Penn State Defense Key In Getting Back To Winning Ways

Sure, Penn State’s offense — one loaded with talent across the board — has been frustrating to watch at times, especially lately. But the Nittany Lion defensive unit that’s been gouged in two consecutive weeks stepped up against a Rutgers team with three conference victories to its name — and it did so in commanding fashion.

Rutgers’ issues began in through the air, and right off the bat it was clear Scarlet Knights QB Giovanni Rescigno was going to have a long day. He was held to 43 yards through the air on a mere seven completions and was constantly pressured by defenders in the backfield — and more often than not was forced to leave the pocket. It was an encouraging sign on all accounts by Penn State’s defense, especially when you consider how much the unit’s struggled with getting to the quarterback lately. Though there’s still work to be done, the Nittany Lions couldn’t muster much of anything in terms of quarterback pressure against Ohio State and Michigan State — and they paid dearly for it. Spartan quarterback Brian Lewerke looked like Tom Brady as he sliced and diced Penn State’s defense to the tune of 400 yards last weekend, making today’s noble showing a refreshing change.

“Obviously over the past couple weeks we had some setbacks,” DL Curtis Cothran said. “This week was a great way to get back on track for us.”

If Penn State is to clinch a coveted New Year’s Six bowl berth, then preventing teams from staying in games will be paramount down the stretch. This team can’t afford a setback to any of its final two opponents — and in all honesty needs to beat both Nebraska and Maryland to a pulp in order to put its best foot forward when bowl season rolls around.

Up front, one of the team’s most important linemen — especially now after injuries to Torrence Brown and Ryan Buchholz — has been tasked with a larger load. You might’ve noticed how DL Kevin Givens lines up seemingly at every position on the line, and for good reason: he’s getting the job done. “It’s definitely huge, because each different position has their own job on each play,” Cothran said of his teammate. “So for him to be able to hone in and grasp everything — you know, what the ends are doing and what the tackles are doing — is crazy.”

With a Nebraska offense that ranks fifth in the Big Ten for total offense, the Nittany Lions can’t lose momentum. A key focal point as the team’s date with the Cornhuskers draws near must be timing blitzes correctly. Late pressure cost the team in a big way against Michigan State, and it was evident again early on against the Scarlet Knights. Nebraska quarterback Tanner Lee could get hot at an inopportune time for Penn State in a game it must win handily.

At the end of the day, today’s defensive progress was a much needed breath of fresh air after two down weeks. This is the Penn State defense we’ve grown to know and love, and hopefully the defense that stays around for the rest of the season.

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

Reports: Tony Carr To Begin Professional Career In Italy

Tony Carr might have to wait a little longer than he had hoped to make his NBA debut.

Penn State Hockey’s Aarne Talvitie Showcases At Devils Development Camp

Penn State Hoops Releases 2018-19 Non-Conference Schedule

Forward Abdou Tsimbila Commits To Penn State Hoops

Penn State Volleyball Trio Representing U.S. At Pan-American Cup

Student Life

Penn State Student Dies Of Allergic Reaction To Peanuts

Max McGlinchey had just finished his freshman year studying finance.

Freshman 101: On-Campus Life

Student Farm To Commemorate Summer Solstice With Second Annual Celebration

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.

Indigo Closes, Future Plans For Nightclub Space Await

Indigo Nightclub announced that it would be closing following Arts Fest, but it doesn’t sound like the Hotel State College bar space would be empty for long

Playa Bowls To Open State College Location

Famous on the Jersey Shore for its brightly colored bowls and smoothies, Playa Bowls’ menu includes everything from açai and pitaya bowls to fresh juices.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Doggie’s Rathskeller And Garden Opens With Hopes Of Returning To Its Roots

The All-American Rathskeller is no more and Doggie’s Rathskeller and Garden is officially in business — opening with its “sneak peak” at the new bar Thursday afternoon in time for Arts Fest.

Send this to a friend