Posted on: January 2, 2011 7:24 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli
It seems that quarterbacks on the bench at Penn State don't enjoy their time there very much. For weeks it's been reported that backup quarterback Kevin Newsome, after losing the quarterback job to Matt McGloin and Robert Bolden, wouldn't be returning to Penn State next season. The fact he didn't make the trip to Tampa for the bowl game basically confirmed it.
Well now it appears that Robert Bolden isn't going to stick around either. Bolden's father, Robert Bolden Sr, told Lions247 that his son is looking to transfer.
"It's true, he's looking to leave Penn State,"said Bolden's father. "He's notified the coaches, that's as far as it's gone so far. We're waiting on the next step now."
"They're not looking for him to leave, they don't want him to leave, but he no longer wants to play at Penn State. He's not happy at Penn State currently. If it was up to me, he definitely [would leave], without a doubt. He's definitely made it known that he does not want to be there anymore."
Which means that Matt McGloin won't have much competition for the starting job next season, though don't sleep on freshman quarterback Paul Jones. Considering McGloin just threw five interceptions against Florida in the Outback Bowl, that probably doesn't leave Penn State fans feeling all too comfortable.
Bolden started seven games for the Nittany Lions this season, throwing for 1,360 yards, 5 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. He had been one of the prize members of Penn State's 2010 recruiting class.
Posted on: January 1, 2011 5:20 pm
Edited on: January 1, 2011 5:20 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli
Urban Meyer goes out with a win and a complimentary Bloomin' Onion as Florida defeats Penn State 37-24
Offense: Florida scored 37 points on Saturday, but don't think that means the Gators offense finally figured things out. Fourteen of those points came courtesy of the defense and special teams. Meanwhile, the two offensive touchdowns Florida did manage came on two drives totaling 40 yards thanks to Penn State turnovers.
In total, the Florida offense managed only 287 yards on the day, with its trio of quarterbacks combining to complete 14-of-27 passes for 102 yards. If there was a standout player for Gators on offense, it was Omarius Hines who had 59 all-purpose yards and a touchdown. Other than that, there wasn't much to celebrate on offense.
If the Gators were to hand out an offensive MVP for the game, it would likely go to kicker/punter Chas Henry or safety Ahmad Black. Grade:D
Defense: Thankfully for the Gators, while they still don't have an offense, the defense made the trip down south to Tampa on Saturday. Ahmad Black had a huge day in his final game as a Gator, including the deciding pick-six in the final minutes that put an end to Penn State's chances. All in all the Gators forced five turnovers on the game, all via the interception, and held Penn State to only seven points in the second half. Grade: B+
Coaching: You'd think that with over a month passing between Florida's last game and this one, the coaching staff might have been able to come up with an offensive game plan that wasn't as terrible as the one we'd seen all season. Unfortunately, even though Steve Addazio accepted the head coaching job at Temple, he stuck around Gainesville for this game. Still, since it was Urban Meyer's final game, and his beloved special teams unit got him a touchdown, the Gators staff still gets a decent grade. Grade: B-
Offense: To put it simply, Penn State's offense cost them a win on Saturday. Particularly Matt McGloin, who on one play would make a throw that completely surpassed your expectations, and on the next would throw a pass that completely defied logic. McGloin threw five interceptions on the day. Five.
You're not going to win many games turning the ball over that often.
Penn State's offense actually out-gained Florida's offense by 70 yards in this one, and Evan Royster rushed for 99 yards, but the interceptions and McGloin's overall decision-making killed the Nittany Lions. Grade: F
Defense: You can't pin this one on the Penn State defense at all. It did it's job and smothered a lackluster Florida offense, but the Nittany Lions found themselves in too many bad spots thanks to the turnovers. Really, the defense played well given the circumstances, holding Florida to field goals a lot of the time. Nobody on this Penn State defense has anything to be ashamed of following this game, and Matt McGloin owes everybody on this unit a free meal. Grade: B
Coaching: I did not like what Joe Paterno and the Penn State coaching job did on offense in this game. I'm sorry, but when my quarterback has had trouble with deeper routes all season long and is turning the ball over frequently, I'm not going to drop him back and have him throw 42 times. It just doesn't make any sense. If you feel you have to throw so much, then run plays with shorter routes. Yes, McGloin had a bad game, but his coaches didn't do him a lot of favors. Grade: D+
This game was not pretty. Not at all. Still, given the action going on around the state of Florida and in Texas elsewhere on Saturday at the same time, at least this one had a bit of drama in it at the end. It's for that reason, and that reason only, that this grade is even this high. Grade: C+
Posted on: December 31, 2010 8:46 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli
The Basics: Florida (7-5) vs. Penn State (7-5), Jan.1, 1pm ET
Why You Should Watch: Well, first of all, you should watch this game because it'll be starting around the same time you're finally waking up out of your New Year's Eve haze. Nothing like some football to help you shake the cobwebs out of your brain. Oh, and it's also the final time you will have a chance to see Urban Meyer nearly suffer a heart attack on a Florida sideline. Not to mention, depending on who you want to believe, it could also be the final time that Joe Paterno ever graces a sideline.
Keys to Victory for Florida: You could question how Florida will approach this game given everything that's gone on in Gainesville over the last month, but I don't think motivation is going to be a problem. There's no way these Gators want to send Urban Meyer out with a loss. To do this, well, the Gators will have do so something they haven't done all season.
Find some consistency on offense. Whether it's John Brantley through the air, or Trey Burton on the ground, whoever is at quarterback for Florida is going to have to make some plays against this Penn State defense. That means the Gators offensive line, which has been pretty disappointing this year, is going to need to step up the protection. When Brantley is back there he tends to make dumb decisions when facing pressure and has a hard time reading coverage.
The best way to help Brantley would be to get the ground game going with Mike Gillislee, Emmanuel Moody, Jeff Demps and Chris Rainey. Penn State has had some problems with the run this season, and the Gators should watch the game film of the Penn State game against Illinois and copy Illinois' game plan. Maybe Ron Zook can finally win a bowl game for Florida after all these years.
Keys to Victory for Penn State: Florida is faster and more athletic than Penn State. The best way for Penn State to counter this will be to attack, attack and attack some more on defense. Blitz John Brantley like there is no tomorrow and force him to make decisions he's not ready to make. Also, as I mentioned earlier, the Nittany Lions need to tighten things up against the run.
When Penn State has the ball it should look to exploit the Gators a bit in the secondary. Yes, Evan Royster should still get plenty of carries to soften up the Florida defense, but the Gators don't have Janoris Jenkins in this game and he's not an easy player to replace. Now, the problem here is that as good as Matt McGloin has been, he's not very effective on deep routes. Which means that Penn State should look to attack Florida on shorter routes like slants and hitches.
Finally, it will be important for Royster and the offensive line to have move the ball against the Florida run defense. Royster had a couple of lackluster games against tough run defenses like Alabama and Ohio State this season, and for Penn State to have a legit chance in this game, he's going to have to produce.
The Outback Bowl is like: one of those Rolling Stones farewell concerts. You know that even though they claim it's the last time you'll ever see them performing, they're going to come back eventually. Yes, Urban Meyer may be leaving Florida to spend time with the family and tend to his health, but do you really believe a man that immersed in football is never coming back? I don't.
Posted on: December 23, 2010 1:59 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli
Remember a few weeks ago when there were rumors that Penn State quarterback Kevin Newsome was likely going to transfer rather than return to compete with Matt McGloin and Robert Bolden? Yeah, well, they have a bit more credence now.
According to a report in The Patriot News, Newsome did not accompany the team on its trip to Tampa.
Two sources close to the Penn State football program told The Patriot-News earlier today that reserve quarterback Kevin Newsome did not make the trip to Florida for Penn State's Jan. 1 Outback Bowl game with Florida in Tampa.
The news hardly qualifies as a surprise. Earlier this month, there were internet reports that Newsome, the No. 3 quarterback behind starter Matt McGloin and backup Rob Bolden, was unhappy with his role and considering a transfer.
Those don't sound like the actions of a player who plans on returning and fighting for a job next season. The rumors started earlier in the month when Joe Paterno said during the Outback Bowl media days that he couldn't be sure whether or not Newsome would be returning next season. Which, makes sense for Newsome, because considering everything that's happened at quarterback in State College this season, it seems pretty clear that Newsome isn't the quarterback of the future.
So if he wants to see the field while he still has any eligibility, he's going to have to move on.
Posted on: December 10, 2010 1:01 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli
Kevin Newsome came to Penn State as a highly-touted recruit, and spent his freshman season on the sideline watching Daryll Clark finish his Penn State career thinking that he'd be the man to take over the job in 2010. Sure, he had to have a competition with Matt McGloin before the season started, but come on, McGloin was a walk on, the job was Newsome's.
What Newsome didn't count on was Robert Bolden coming in and taking the job away from both of them. To make matters worse, when Bolden went down with a concussion, it wasn't Newsome who got the call to replace him. It was McGloin, and McGloin would keep the job. So because of all this, it's not exactly surprising to hear the news out of Happy Valley that it's more of a Sad Valley for Newsome, and he's planning on transferring.
A report on the Penn State football website, Bluewhiteillustrated.com, indicates Newsome, a true sophomore, wants out of State College. There are no quotes from Newsome or Newsome's family members, the report is based on sources. PSU football spokesman Jeff Nelson said Thursday he was unaware of any change in Newsome's status. And it's also worth noting that the reporter who authored the story, Nate Bauer, was not sure if Newsome had informed the PSU coaching staff of his intentions.
Of course, as the report in The Patriot-News says, there is no official word from Newsome yet, nor has Penn State been told of these plans, so it's still possible that Newsome won't leave. Still, I doubt that's the case unless Newsome wants to spend the final two seasons of his college career holding a clipboard on the sideline.
I'm pretty sure that's not what he came to Penn State to do. He wants to play, and it doesn't look like he's going to get that opportunity in State College.
Posted on: December 8, 2010 6:19 pm
Edited on: December 8, 2010 6:23 pm
Posted by Chip Patterson
The Outback Bowl became a lot more interesting on Wednesday with the news that Urban Meyer would step down as Florda's head coach following the game. The true irony, of course, is that the opposing coach is Penn State's Joe Paterno, who still has not retired at the age of 83 [note: Paterno will turn 84 on December 21]. But while everyone spends the foreseeable future discussing the future of the Florida football program, the Nittany Lions will prepare to face the Gators of the present.
Step one in that preparation was naming a starting quarterback. After the signal calling duties were split throughout the season between Rob Bolden and Matt McGloin, but Paterno has named McGloin the starter for the team's bowl game on New Years Day.
“I think that Matt is the quarterback,” Paterno said in a bowl teleconference earlier this week. “Now the other kid (Bolden) has a lot of ability, but he is a true freshman in the truest sense of the word – he wasn’t even here for spring practice. He came in and unfortunately we had to start him a few games early until the other kid (McGloin) started to show some promise."
So talk all you want about Urban Meyer, Dan Mullen, Winston Churchill, or the Ghost of Tim Tebow, but the Outback Bowl will still be about the 2010 Gators against the 2010 Nittany Lions. If anything, Penn State has gained a competitive advantage from the new off-field distractions out of Gainesville. For a team that struggled in the big games this year, the Nittany Lions will take every advantage they can get.
Posted on: November 14, 2010 2:32 am
Posted by Adam Jacobi
1. The Iowa defense is the biggest fraud in the Big Ten. Credit must go to Dan Persa and Northwestern for their gutsy fourth-quarter comeback against the Iowa Hawkeyes, but it's time to stop lauding the Iowa defense as one of the nation's best, because it isn't -- not when the game is on the line. Iowa has given up game-winning drives -- and long, sustained ones, at that -- to three different opponents this season, and if it hadn't been for an unconscionable end zone drop by Indiana wideout Damario Belcher on 4th down last week, that total would be four, in just 10 games. It's one thing to hold lightweights like Iowa State and Eastern Illinois to just one score. It's another to get a stop when the team needs one the most, and Iowa's defense just doesn't seem capable of doing that.
2. Bret Bielema's empathy generator is broken. Quick, name the one Big Ten coach who would run up 83 points on a conference opponent. It's probably the same one that goes for two while up by 25 with under seven minutes to play, isn't it? Why yes it is. Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema continued his quest to get every mediocre coach in the Big Ten fired with an 83-20 firebombing of Indiana in Madison. And though Bielema will again claim not to be running up the score, it's worth pointing out that Scott Tolzien was throwing passes to fellow starters Lance Kendricks and David Gilreath with a 39-point lead and under five minutes left in the third quarter. Yes, it's up to Indiana to make the stop, and Indiana never did, but in a 63-point win, it's never good to see the winning team converting a 76-yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter -- regardless of whether a backup threw it. Wisconsin, we're looking at you here.
3. There's plenty of Hawkeye fans in East Lansing. The Big Ten title race is down to three one-loss teams, and as of right now, Wisconsin owns the tiebreaker for the trip to Pasadena (or if all hell really breaks loose, Glendale, but let's assume Pasadena). Of the three teams, only one -- Ohio State -- faces a ranked team down the stretch, and that's OSU's trip to Iowa next weekend. If Iowa wins, all of a sudden, Michigan State has the upper hand for the league title. Ohio State wins, and we're back to the three-team non-round-robin tiebreaker, which is BCS standing. MSU is not such a big fan of that idea: the Spartans are firmly mired at third among Big Ten teams in that department. So yes, there's still plenty of endgame drama left in the Big Ten, even if it involves two teams that are at best longshots for the title.
4. Matt McGloin has "moxie," but Ohio State has a secondary. Advantage, OSU. It's hard to believe, looking at the 38-14 final score from Columbus, but Penn State actually led the Buckeyes 14-3 at the break, and it could have been worse. PSU QB Matt McGloin threw two touchdown passes in the first half, and unlike the two he threw in the second half, the first half scores were to his own team. Yes, things sort of fell off a cliff for Penn State, and the turning point was likely late in the first half, when Joe Paterno got greedy on 4th and 1 at the OSU 20 and went for it. The Evan Royster rush failed, the Buckeye defense's heart grew three sizes, and PSU never even threatened to score for the rest of the game.
It was a sobering return to reality for Penn State fans who witnessed McGloin's dissection of the Northwestern defense last week and were entertaining dreams of McGloin as a wildly successful three (or two-and-a-half, anyway) -year starter over true freshman Rob Bolden, Joe Paterno's choice at the beginning of the season. The fact of the matter is, there's usually plenty more to turning a struggling offense around than just making a switch at quarterback, and when Bolden's got a full year of film study and practice under his belt, he's probably going to be a better quarterback than McGloin. That fact doesn't have much relevance today, which is why McGloin started at Columbus and probably will next week, but it would be extremely presumptive to look at McGloin's first two quarters at OSU and attach a tag like "the future" to him -- unless the words "clipboard holder for Rob Bolden" immediately follow.
Tags: Ball State, BCS Tiebreakers, Big Ten, Big Ten Tiebreakers, Bret Bielema, Damario Belcher, Dan Persa, David Gilreath, Evan Royster, Indiana, Indiana, Iowa, Iowa State, Lance Kendricks, Matt McGloin, Michigan State, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Rob Bolden, Rose Bowl, Rose Bowl Tiebreakers, Scott Tolzien, What I Learned, Wisconsin
Posted on: November 12, 2010 6:37 pm
Posted by College Football Blog staff
Every season, every month, every week, there are several outcomes and achievements that, frankly, nobody operating within reason would ever predict. Who could have predicted Nebraska would beat Florida for the 1995 title by 38 points, or that Boise State would pull off three late trick plays to knock off Oklahoma in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl, or that TCU would drop a 47-7 bomb on Utah last week? We're going to try capture that lightning in a bottle by making similarly absurd predictions every week. Are they at all likely to come true? No. Do we even believe the words we're writing? No. But if we make even one correct call on these, we will never stop gloating. Ever.
San Diego State plays the role of BCS spoiler by upsetting TCU in Fort Worth, 27-24. Andy Dalton struggles against an aggressive defense, and SDSU takes advantage of numerous turnovers to crack the TCU defensive wall. While Boise State fans squeal with glee at their new life in the BCS Championship Game race, the win solidifies Brady Hoke as the hottest coaching prospect in America. By Monday morning, Hoke has job offers from Colorado, Minnesota, and Texas. Yep: Texas. --Adam Jacobi
Highly UnlikelyIn Columbus, the Ohio State Buckeyes take on Penn State with their Big Ten title hopes still alive. Though PSU walk-on quarterback Matt McGloin has been somewhat impressive over the last few games, he hasn't faced a defense near the quality of Ohio State's -- and the Buckeyes know it. As a result, they're a bit over confident and are completely blindsided when McGloin explodes for 500 yards passing and six touchdowns as the Nittany Lions embarrass Ohio State 45-3. In a state of shock after the game, Jim Tressel completely breaks character and alleges that when Matt McGloin tried to walk on at Ohio State, he told the coaches he wouldn't play without a scholarship for less than $200,000. Ohio State refused, and then McGloin walked on at Penn State. "Do the math," says Tressel, and a media firestorm then ensues, leading to weeks of unnamed sources saying that McGloin might have taken or asked for money, but he also might not have. Nobody really knows, and no evidence is ever found, and McGloin and Penn State are never punished. Then the heads of all the BCS conferences meet in their secret lair and pat each other on the back for creating yet another diversion to keep everyone from talking about a playoff or bashing the BCS. --Tom Fornelli
Facing a Cal defense already torn to ribbons by the other funky, explosive rushing attack the Bears have faced this season (i.e, Nevada 's), LaMichael James, Darron Thomas, and the rest of Chip Kelly 's Oregon offense spend most of the first quarter in the highest gear imaginable, running with impunity and snapping the ball only seconds after it's set by the official. As the Bears wear down and offer even less resistance, the Ducks get faster and faster, quicker and quicker, until late in the second quarter (with the score already 51-3) the Ducks appear to violate one of the fundamental laws of the college football space-time continuum by snapping the ball before it's even been set. As Thomas is hauled down for a 32-yard gain on the ensuing play, fans notice that the Ducks' usual eye-searing uniforms are ... changing? Changing, into something even more eye-searing: they've gone plaid. In green-and-yellow, nonetheless.
The Cam Newton saga takes an incredible turn on Friday evening before the Tigers host Georgia. The NCAA informs Auburn that it is not Newton, but the rest of the offense which must sit out against the Bulldogs. Staring down less than 24 hours to replace an entire offense, head coach Gene Chizik is clueless. But not Newton. Cecil Newton finds a loophole in the NCAA rules (of course he does ), that allows his son to take the field with 10 members of the U12 Louisiana Blitz, a club soccer team from New Orleans. In the most bizarre Heisman moment in history, Newton and the middle schoolers put up 49 points on Georgia's defense. Newton throws for 200 yards, rushes for 200 yards, and catches a touchdown from the starting goalie just to prove a point. At the end of the game, Newton picks up a guitar and leads the entire stadium in a rendition of Kenny Rogers' "The Gambler." Because, as Newton says, "That's funny to Cam." --Chip Patterson
Tags: Andy Dalton, Auburn, Boise State, California, Cam Newton, Cam Newton Investigation, Chip Kelly, Darron Thomas, Gene Chizik, Georgia, Gratuitous Movie References, Insane Predictions, Jim Tressel, Kenny Rogers, LaMichael James, Matt McGloin, Nevada, Ohio State, Oregon, Penn State, San Diego State, Spaceballs, TCU