Tag:Joe Paterno
Posted on: November 16, 2011 1:54 pm
 

Scout: Penn St was worst place in country for us

A few days ago my CBS colleague Mike Freeman pointed out that many NFL scouts wouldn't miss Joe Paterno at Penn State due to his dictorial control of the program and the complications his control made in evaluating prospects.

Freeman quoted an anonymous scout as saying Penn State was "one of the worst places in the country to try and do your job."

I spoke to a high level scout, myself, who echoed that sentiment and provided even more specifics.

"The comment doesn't surprise me at all. Penn State has been the worst place in the country for scouts," he said. "Most schools and their [coaches, trainers] are pretty damn good to us. They're willing to work around our schedules and answer our questions because they realize the relationship they have with the league. If their players get drafted, it is only going to help them recruit more talent."

The scout didn't want to mention other schools that make scouts' jobs difficult, but did point out that USC under Pete Carroll and that Alabama under Nick Saban have been particularly welcoming to scouts.

"You could go into their facilities most days and as long as you were respectful of their time and preparation for their next opponent, they'd help us do our job. At Penn State, you literally only had two or three days a year where you could go in and scout players. It got to the point where a lot of guys didn't even take the trouble of going there. We'd do a lot of the scouting and interviews of Penn State players during all-star games and in individual workouts."

The scout didn't seem to think that the lack of access contributed significantly to the fact that Penn State has produced some of the more memorable busts in NFL draft history, but was willing to acknowledge the possibility.

"No team drafts a player that they haven't done their complete homework on, so I don't think [the limited access] played a critical role. Still, the more information you have about a player, the better... and Penn State made things more difficult."
Posted on: September 26, 2011 6:27 am
 

Penn State loses LB Mauti to torn ACL vs. EMU

Despite impressively beating Eastern Michigan 34-6 Saturday, Joe Paterno's Nittany Lions suffered a significant loss over the weekend with redshirt junior outside linebacker Michael Mauti tearing the ACL in his left knee.

Mauti, 6-2, and 242 pounds, was the team's leading tackler and some believe had ascended this season to be the Nittany Lions' best all-around player.

Mauti's season will end with 21 tackles; still tied for the team lead in stops despite his injury occurring in the first quarter. He was viewed as Penn State's most reliable and versatile linebacker. Stout, strong and surprisingly speedy in coverage, Mauti had already established himself as one of the better young linebacker prospects for the NFL. Though he played outside for Penn State, his size and instincts appeared to make him a logical candidate to move inside at the pro level. Mauti was all over the field for Penn State a few weeks ago in the showdown with Alabama, racking up a career high 13 tackles. A week ago he posted six tackles, including a career high three tackles for loss and an interception that led to Penn State's winning drive in the win over Temple.

Mauti, according to Penn State Director of Athletic Medicine Dr. Wayne Sebastianelli, is expected to undergo surgery in the next two weeks. His rehabilitation is expected to take a minimum of nine months.

This is the second time Mauti has torn an ACL. He tore the ligament in his right knee during fall camp in 2009 and missed the entire season.

Mauti entered the week as NFLDraftScout.com's No. 9 inside linebacker prospect for the class of 2013.
Posted on: September 26, 2009 8:16 pm
Edited on: September 26, 2009 8:33 pm
 

Expect low-scoring, physical battle with PSU-Iowa

In today's day and age of the finesse spread and triple option offenses that have accurately been described as almost basketball on turf, it is rare that we get to watch good ole' fashioned grind 'em out football, but that is exactly what I expect in the Big Ten battle between Iowa and #5 Penn State.

Everyone knows about Penn State's tradition of linebackers, but I expect the senior duo of ILB Pat Angerer and OLB AJ Edds to give the Nittany Lions more trouble than most are projecting. Junior running back Evan Royster is a star and his ability to catch passes from senior QB Darryl Clark is certainly a test for the Hawkeye defense, but this is as fundamentally-sound a unit as I've seen all year long. That is a testament to head coach Kirk Ferentz, who I believe is among the country's absolute best.

The going may be tough for the Hawkeyes offensively. The loss of Aaron Maybin to the first round was a significant one, but I'd argue the more important loss is of ILB Sean Lee, who is being held out due to a sprained left knee. Lee missed all of last season with a torn ACL in his right knee, but appeared to be back to his usually productive self with double-digit tackles in two of his first three games this year. With potential Top 50 selection in DT Jared Odrick in front of him and a talented supporting class that includes OLB Navorro Bowman, Penn State appears defensively capable of bettering the physicality they pitched last year, against RB Shonn Greene, potential All-American LT Brian Baluga and the rest of the Hawkeyes.

I mention Green and Baluga, as neither will contribute for the Hawkeyes today. Green, of course, left early and was selected with the first pick of the 3rd round last April by the Jets. Baluga, only a junior, has been hospitalized with an undisclosed illness and held out of the past two games. 

Penn State and their fans will be anxious for the opportunity to avenge the loss to the Hawkeyes that kept the Nittany Lions out of the National Championship last year.

Expect a tough, physical battle tonight, but for Joe Pa to get that much closer to another shot at a championship.

 
 
 
 
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