Drew Allar Shines In Beaver Stadium Debut

The future is here, folks.

There were many headlines from Penn State’s 46-10 home-opening win over Ohio University. Freshman running back Nick Singleton racked up 179 rushing yards and scored his first pair of touchdowns as a Nittany Lion, and Sean Clifford had a fine game himself. But Penn State fans will leave today with the thought of true freshman quarterback Drew Allar putting on a show at Beaver Stadium.

After his short, but promising, four-play appearance last week against Purdue, many Penn State fans hoped to see the former five-star recruit make his Beaver Stadium debut. Their wishes were met, as Allar came in for Clifford to a massive ovation early in the third quarter. His presence was felt immediately in the game, as the energy in the stadium quickly took an upwards turn.

Allar finished the game completing six of eight passes for 88 yards and a pair of touchdowns, the first two in his college career, finishing the game with a quarterback rating of 249.9. But it wasn’t his stat line that wowed Penn State fans. The Medina, Ohio native had a strong, yet comfortable presence in the pocket and looked like a seasoned veteran. That’s not common for a true freshman to have, as he looked way above his age today.

If you want to see for yourself, look at him work the pocket before throwing his second touchdown of the day.

That’s some good stuff.

Head coach James Franklin complimented Allar’s performance in his postgame press conference.

“He’s super poised in there,” Franklin said. “For a young kid, the game seems slow to him already. I think he’s doing a very good job from a preparation standpoint.”

Franklin went on to mention that he believes Allar’s 6’5″, 242-pound figure helps him in the pocket since he’s “bigger than half the guys chasing him.”

Veteran signal caller Sean Clifford did have a solid game, though. The sixth-year signal caller threw for 213 yards and a touchdown, completing 19 of 27 passes. Even though he wants to be out on the field as much as possible, he was happy to see Allar get the experience.

“I want to win more than anything. I have no ego in that,” Clifford said after the game. “The only thing that matters to me is winning football games, and I know how important it is to get those guy reps…I think it was awesome today to be able to get Drew in there for series after series, and [Veilleux] a couple of series, as well.”

Clifford later said that he’s very proud of the quarterback room and how they’ve handled the buzz surrounding the team.

Allar’s strong performance only raises more questions concerning who should get the starting job between him and Clifford. At this point, it’s certainly a fair question for fans to ask, but Franklin alluded that the depth chart probably won’t change, at least for now.

“We’re just going to continue to emphasize that everybody’s role is critical, but ultimately, we gotta do what’s best for the team.”

Along with Allar, redshirt freshman quarterback Christian Veilleux also got some reps in the game today, something the team struggled to do at the beginning of last season. The reps for both Allar and Veilleux will only serve the Nittany Lions well looking down the road.

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About the Author

Frankie Marzano

Frankie is a senior accounting and economics major from Long Island, NY. You can probably recognize him as the typical Italian-American with slicked back black hair. He is an avid fan of the New York Rangers and Mets, along with every Penn State Athletics team. Follow him on Twitter @frankiemarzano for obnoxious amounts of Rangers and Penn State content or email him at [email protected].

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