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Penn State’s Post-Maryland Report Card

Penn State kept its momentum going with a dominating 30-0 shutout win over Maryland in Beaver Stadium on Saturday.

It seemed like the Nittany Lions never gave the Terps a chance, as Maryland only gained 134 total yards on offense, with just 27 coming in the first half. On the other side of the ball, Nick Singleton balled out, with Kaytron Allen rolling out a solid performance, too. Singleton picked up 123 yards on the ground with two touchdowns, averaging a whopping 11.1 yards per carry.

So, as we hit another victory Monday, let’s look at some grades from this past weekend.

Quarterbacks: B-

Sean Clifford broke Trace McSorley’s all-time passing yards record for Penn State, passing 9,899 yards early in the first quarter. That was cool, but the quarterbacks were pretty quiet other than that, albeit, it was a tough day to throw the football in wet, windy, and rainy conditions. So, I’ll cut this group some slack for that reason.

Clifford completed 12-of-23 passes for 139 yards and one touchdown. He did make a few less-than-great throws, but so did his backup, Drew Allar, who only threw for 18 yards on six passing attempts. Overall, it was a quiet day for this group.

Running Backs: A

There’s nothing else to say about this group except that it was just dominant on Saturday. Nick Singleton literally carried a man into the end zone on the same exact play that he scored a touchdown on earlier in the game.

Singleton looked like a new player on Saturday, like a much more physical version of his already dynamic self. The Reading, Pennsylvania, native rushed for 123 yards and two touchdowns, averaging 11.1 yards per carry, which is crazy. Kaytron Allen had a great day behind him, too, with 75 yards on 16 carries. It’s safe to say these two will be a problem for teams in the Big Ten for the next two, maybe three, years.

Wide Receivers: B

I don’t think there’s much to say about this group for this week. The receivers were relatively quiet, as Penn State pounded the rock more in the rainy conditions. The two leading receivers in the position were Mitchell Tinsley with one catch for 25 yards and Liam Clifford with one catch for 18 yards.

Tight Ends: A-

Similar to the receivers, Penn State’s tight ends had a quiet day through the air. Theo Johnson led the team with 44 receiving yards on three catches, while Brenton Strange was second with 34 yards and a touchdown on three catches, as well. But, each of them helped contribute to the run game immensely with their blocking at the line of scrimmage. When your team rushes for 256 yards and doesn’t allow a sack, credit belongs to the tight ends in addition to the offensive line.

Offensive Line: A+

Given how banged up the offensive line is, the fact that this group held Maryland to zero sacks and only three quarterback hurries is very impressive. That’s already a great feat with a fully healthy line. With no Olu Fashanu or Landon Tengwall, the group gave Penn State’s quarterback ample time to throw the ball and make plays when he needed to. We should also mention that Penn State amassed 256 rushing yards in the game, which is largely attributed to how this group controlled the line of scrimmage. This was Penn State’s best-performing group of the game.

Front Seven: A

As you’d expect, Penn State’s front seven was also dominant on the other side of the line of scrimmage. The group allowed 60 rushing yards on 37 attempts, holding the Terps to only 1.6 yards per carry. Maryland never stood a chance by rushing the ball. In addition, the front seven had seven quarterback hurries and sacked Taulia Tagovailoa a whopping seven times for a combined loss of 49 yards. In total, the group recorded nine tackles for a loss of 56 combined yards. Chop Robinson was arguably the player of the game in this group. The former Terp sacked his former quarterback twice for a loss of nine yards and recorded three tackles.

Secondary: A

Tagovailoa had nothing to work with down the field, as Penn State’s secondary was a no-fly zone for the second consecutive week. Tagovailoa only threw for 74 yards, completing 11-of-22 passes. Maryland’s leading receiver, Rakim Jarrett, was held to only 30 receiving yards on three catches. That’s just a dominant performance from this group.

Special Teams: A

Jake Pinegar was the standout player in this category. The fifth-year senior was a perfect 3-for-3 on field goal attempts, making them from 50, 46, and 21 yards, respectively. Saturday’s performance showed Penn State fans that he has become quite the reliable kicker. Barney Amor did his job as well, with a long punt of 53 yards. He drew a roughing the kicker penalty on one punt that gave Penn State a first down, but the punt would have been downed at the two-yard line if there was no call. Alex Bacchetta also got some action. He punted twice for 81 yards and downed both of them inside the 20-yard line.

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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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