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SPORTS
October 14, 2013 | By Dan Norton, Inquirer Staff Writer
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - On the first play of the second half, Zach Zwinak fumbled the football over to Michigan's Frank Clark, who ran it in for a touchdown. Zwinak didn't touch the ball again Saturday night in Penn State's 43-40 quadruple overtime victory over Michigan, so Bill Belton entered the fray. Belton stepped up at the end of the fourth quarter as coach Bill O'Brien opted for a heavier run game. By the fourth overtime, Penn State was down three points and facing a fourth and 1. O'Brien said he was tired of trading field goals with the Wolverines.
SPORTS
October 13, 2013 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - Allen Robinson was a late bloomer in high school, having grown in size and skill after most of the major colleges, including Michigan, decided to pass on making the wide receiver an offer when he played in the Detroit suburb of Orchard Lake, Mich. "They really didn't have too much interest in me, I would say," Robinson said this week. Penn State saw enough of Robinson during its successful recruitment of highly regarded quarterback Rob Bolden, Robinson's teammate at St. Mary's Prep in Orchard Lake, to eventually make the receiver an offer.
SPORTS
October 13, 2013 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Taylor Lewan knows the atmosphere Saturday night at Beaver Stadium will be electric and that the noise from the sellout crowd of more than 106,000 will make his ears ring. However, even though he'll be wearing the uniform of visiting Michigan, the all-American offensive tackle is excited about the opportunity to compete against Penn State in such a setting. "Sometimes we'll be standing face to face [with a teammate] and I won't be able to hear myself think or hear you talk," Lewan said Monday at a press conference in Ann Arbor, Mich.
SPORTS
October 13, 2013
When: Saturday at 5 p.m. Where: Beaver Stadium, State College, Pa. Records: Michigan (5-0, 1-0 Big Ten, ranked No. 18 by the Associated Press); Penn State (3-2, 0-1). TV/Radio: ESPN; WNTP-AM (990), WNPV-AM (1440). Coaches: Michigan, Brady Hoke (third season, 24-7); Penn State, Bill O'Brien (second season, 11-6). Series: The Wolverines hold a 10-6 edge, but the Nittany Lions won the last meeting, 41-31, at Beaver Stadium in 2010. That and two other Penn State victories have been vacated by NCAA sanctions.
SPORTS
October 10, 2013 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Penn State coach Bill O'Brien made it perfectly clear Tuesday that he would not talk about his team's loss to Indiana, no matter how nicely reporters asked him. O'Brien said the focus was on 18th-ranked Michigan, the Nittany Lions' opponent Saturday at Beaver Stadium, and he said it a lot - using a form of the word "focus" about 10 times during his weekly teleconference, and a few more times on the Big Ten coaches' call. "Indiana is over," the coach said. "It's in the rearview mirror.
SPORTS
October 7, 2013 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - When one sees Christian Hackenberg changing plays at the line of scrimmage and dodging ferocious pass rushers and completing a pass in a small window, it's hard to believe that he's 18 years old and a veteran of just five college football games. The Penn State freshman got a taste of his first-ever Big Ten road game Saturday and threw 55 passes, a school record, but wound up on the short end of a 44-24 count against Indiana. Hackenberg, who broke Kerry Collins' mark of 54 attempts against Brigham Young in 1992, had career highs for completions (30)
SPORTS
September 23, 2013 | By Dan Norton, Inquirer Staff Writer
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - The rain assailed Beaver Stadium's surfaces, in thick waves rather than straight precipitation. The trenches were soaked, and the players' jerseys were soaked. There was practically no grip, for any player on either line. The first literal slipup often decided who won any given pass rush. "You have to try to [acclimate]," defensive tackle C.J. Olaniyan said. "When you get a hold of somebody, you have to make sure you get a good hold. " The mud of Beaver Stadium proved more familiar to Penn State than Kent State in the Lions' 34-0 shutout Saturday.
SPORTS
September 19, 2013 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
As expected, Bill O'Brien's primary complaint about Penn State's mediocre defensive performance against Central Florida concerned poor tackling. "Sometimes we tackled them, sometimes we didn't," the Nittany Lions coach said Tuesday at his weekly teleconference with reporters. The Lions (2-1) yielded 507 total yards Saturday night in their 34-31 loss to UCF at Beaver Stadium. The Knights' skill players relied on their speed combined with a dozen - maybe two dozen, maybe more - missed tackles to churn out big plays, 10 of 20 yards or more.
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