Author: Ben Berkman
James Franklin made two things clear before the Lions travel South: Carl Nassib is 100 percent healthy for a game for the first time in more than a month, and Christian Hackenberg and Austin Johnson have both applied for draft evaluations from the NFL.
From sloppy play on the court to snubbed season ticket holders in the stands, here are our gameday observations from the two Return to Rec games over the weekend.
Penn State avenged its heartbreaking collapse the last time it played at Rec Hall in an 81-67 victory over Canisius. Brandon Taylor scored 18, and Julian Moore added 14 points on only five shots.
“He can do a little bit of everything. He can shoot, drive, big — 6-foot-6, he can rebound, he can defend really well,” Shep Garner said. “He’s a big part of our team. We love Payton.”
In Week 12, two Nittany Lions (one a former coach, the other a former linebacker) that helped keep the program alive during its darkest days met on an NFL field to face off. Another player during the era, a record-setting quarterback, also saw game action.
Carl Nassib is the Big Ten defensive player of the year, and was named a first-team defender. Michigan’s Jabrill Peppers edged Saquon Barkley as the conference’s top freshman.
Three Nittany Lions were honored in BTN.com’s All-Big Ten football team and awards. Defensive lineman Carl Nassib was named the conference’s player of the year and earned a spot on the all-defensive team. Fellow big man and defensive lineman Austin Johnson was also named to the team. Freshman running back Saquon Barkley earned conference freshman of the year honors after breaking the school’s freshman rushing record.