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Bill Belton

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SPORTS
August 10, 2012 | By Mike Kern and Daily News Staff Writer
STATE COLLEGE — Silas Redd isn't here any more. Neither are his 1,200-plus rushing yards or seven touchdowns. For a team in transition, that's a bunch to overcome. Welcome to Bill Belton's world. The South Jersey native thought he was going to be a wide receiver again this season. New coach Bill O'Brien saw him for the first time and thought otherwise. "Running backs have a certain look to them," he said. "They're muscular, they're built kind of low to the ground. We noticed that right away.
SPORTS
August 27, 2014 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
If there is one thing that has impressed Penn State offensive coordinator John Donovan since he started his job in January, it's the ability of senior running back Bill Belton to fearlessly move his body into the way of a blitzing linebacker on pass plays. "He's a pretty tough kid," Donovan said Monday of Belton, a senior running back from Winslow Township High School in Camden County. "He's a good pass protector, which is something that's not always easy for a running back. "You normally wouldn't think the guy could be great at pass protection," he added, probably in reference to Belton's size of 5-foot-10 and 204 pounds.
SPORTS
November 4, 2013 | By Dan Norton, Inquirer Staff Writer
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - Bill Belton has spent his last two seasons for Penn State transitioning. The former star quarterback at Winslow Township High School came to Penn State as a wide receiver, and now he's a running back. He was struggling in the classroom, but now he's picked up his grades. He ran for 172 yards against Illinois on Saturday, but then he lost a fumble at his opponent's 2-yard line in the fourth quarter, just as Penn State was about to score the go-ahead touchdown.
SPORTS
August 8, 2012 | By Marc Narducci, Inquirer Staff Writer
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - A new, transparent era of Penn State football began with Monday's opening practice for the 2012 season under first-year head coach Bill O'Brien. O'Brien emphasized several times during a 12-minute media gathering that Penn State understands why it has received its penalties from the NCAA due to the Jerry Sandusky child sexual-abuse scandal. Among the sanctions are a four-year bowl ban, scholarship reductions, a $60 million fine, and current players have the ability to transfer and be immediately eligible at their new school.
SPORTS
October 2, 2011 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Once again, the Penn State offense's lack of efficiency put added pressure on the team's defense to keep its opponent off the scoreboard. But the Lions on the defensive side welcomed the chance to be the saviors once again, stopping a late Indiana drive in Saturday's 16-10 win over the Hoosiers. "We go out there every day with the attitude that the defense has to win the game," said linebacker Gerald Hodges , a former star at Paulsboro High. "If we want to be the best defense, we've got to do what it takes to be the best defense, which is not to give up scores, give up a bunch of touchdowns.
SPORTS
November 28, 2011 | BY BERNARD FERNANDEZ, fernanb@phillynews.com
MADISON, Wis. - Curtis Drake, the Penn State redshirt sophomore wide receiver out of West Catholic High, really wanted to celebrate the first touchdown reception of his college career, which also happened to be his longest play as a Nittany Lion. It's just that it's difficult to seem too joyful when your 44-yard trip to the end zone is followed by 45 points for the guys in the different-colored jerseys. Drake sneaked behind the Wisconsin secondary for the deep ball delivered by Matt McGloin in the first quarter when the Badgers blew the coverage in Saturday's regular-season finale in Camp Randall Stadium.
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
December 1, 2014 | By John Stuetz, Inquirer Staff Writer
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - With one last singing of the university alma mater and an unemphatic trot off their home field, Penn State's seniors solemnly bade farewell to a half-empty Beaver Stadium. Unlike the euphoria that followed the Nittany Lions' last two regular-season finales - both upset victories - Saturday's postgame emotion wasn't savored. "Because we lost the game," senior linebacker Mike Hull said after the 34-10 drubbing by Michigan State. "It wasn't a good feeling. We got our butts kicked, so we just wanted to get out of there and get away from it. " The Lions (6-6, 2-6 Big Ten)
SPORTS
September 30, 2012 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The Penn State running game is starting to show the power and physicality that made it famous. The rushing identity on display Saturday in the Nittany Lions' 35-7 romp over Illinois included a power tailback and a shifty tailback taking turns behind an offensive line that gets better every week. Zach Zwinak, a 232-pound sophomore, carried 19 times for a career-high 100 yards and two touchdowns. Bill Belton, a 202-pound sophomore from Winslow Township High who was back in the lineup after missing three games with a sprained left ankle, added 65 yards on 16 carries.
SPORTS
November 16, 2014 | By John Stuetz, Inquirer Staff Writer
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - Akeel Lynch shot through the hole into the open field as two Temple defenders quickly closed in on the Penn State running back from opposite sides. But Lynch's vision remained forward. "I saw the end zone," said Lynch, who skirted through the defenders for a 38-yard, third-quarter touchdown. "I literally said, 'I'm scoring on this play.' " Lynch, a redshirt sophomore, had 18 rushes for 130 yards in the Nittany Lions' 30-13 win over Temple. Senior Bill Belton added 92 rushing yards to Penn State's season-high 254 yards on the ground.
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SPORTS
September 24, 2015 | BY GORDIE JONES, For the Daily News
PENN STATE'S first two games were a one-sided loss to Temple and an uninspiring victory over Buffalo. Then came last Saturday, and Saquon Barkley happened. The freshman from Whitehall High School, in the Lehigh Valley, ran 21 times for 195 yards and two touchdowns in a 28-3 victory over Rutgers, spearheading an effort second-year head coach James Franklin described yesterday as "probably the most complete football game we've played since we've been here. " The Nittany Lions' defense limited the Scarlet Knights to 294 yards, only 43 on the ground.
SPORTS
March 30, 2015 | By Erin McCarthy, Inquirer Staff Writer
The music blaring from the speakers inside Penn State's Holuba Hall on Saturday afternoon was not quite as loud as a packed stadium. But the situation coach James Franklin set up for his players was meant to mirror a specific game scenario. "Today, we took the Illinois situation exactly, yard-line situation, timeouts, and went through it again," Franklin said after practice. "We want to learn from some of the mistakes we did last year. And [Saturday] the offense was able to line up in four-minute offense and play pretty good.
SPORTS
December 23, 2014 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Bill Belton began his final Penn State football season with high hopes and a goal of proving himself as one of the Big Ten's best running backs to those who did not include him on their preseason top-10 lists. The 2014 season, however, didn't pan out the way Belton wanted or expected. Trying to find running room for 12 games through an inexperienced and inconsistent offensive line, the South Jersey native rushed for just 518 yards, a major drop-off from his 803 yards the previous year.
SPORTS
December 1, 2014 | By John Stuetz, Inquirer Staff Writer
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - With one last singing of the university alma mater and an unemphatic trot off their home field, Penn State's seniors solemnly bade farewell to a half-empty Beaver Stadium. Unlike the euphoria that followed the Nittany Lions' last two regular-season finales - both upset victories - Saturday's postgame emotion wasn't savored. "Because we lost the game," senior linebacker Mike Hull said after the 34-10 drubbing by Michigan State. "It wasn't a good feeling. We got our butts kicked, so we just wanted to get out of there and get away from it. " The Lions (6-6, 2-6 Big Ten)
SPORTS
November 23, 2014 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - The frustration continued Saturday for Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenberg, who continues to hang in behind an inexperienced offensive line while trying to make a play but has little to show for his efforts. Hackenberg threw for a career-low 93 yards on 8-of-16 passing in the Nittany Lions' 16-14 loss to Illinois. After 11 games, he continues to take hits - two sacks against the Fighting Illini plus a big blow after a second-quarter pass that had him favoring his right leg - and some of his passes are well off-target.
SPORTS
November 21, 2014 | BY JOHN McGONIGAL, Daily News Staff Writer mcgonij@phillynews.com
STATE COLLEGE - At all his weekly news conferences, Penn State coach James Franklin announces the offensive, defensive and special-teams players of the week, as selected by him and his staff. This week, running back Akeel Lynch was the choice for the offensive honors, and with good reason. Lynch, a redshirt sophomore, broke out like many expected him to finally do, tallying 130 rushing yards on 18 carries for a touchdown and an impressive 7.2 yards per carry. Fellow running back Bill Belton also contributed 92 yards and a TD on 19 carries.
NEWS
November 20, 2014 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
It's something that Penn State coach James Franklin has said repeatedly: The key to his team's success on either side of the football starts with the guys in the trenches. The defensive line has been excellent all season, but Franklin gave a special shout-out Tuesday to his offensive line for one of its best performances of 2014 that resulted in a season-high 254 yards rushing and a 30-13 win over Temple on Saturday. At his weekly news conference, Franklin credited the return of the Nittany Lions' two most experienced offensive linemen - redshirt junior tackle Donovan Smith and fifth-year senior guard Miles Dieffenbach - with a major assist to the running game, which ranks last in the Big Ten Conference.
SPORTS
November 16, 2014 | By John Stuetz, Inquirer Staff Writer
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - Akeel Lynch shot through the hole into the open field as two Temple defenders quickly closed in on the Penn State running back from opposite sides. But Lynch's vision remained forward. "I saw the end zone," said Lynch, who skirted through the defenders for a 38-yard, third-quarter touchdown. "I literally said, 'I'm scoring on this play.' " Lynch, a redshirt sophomore, had 18 rushes for 130 yards in the Nittany Lions' 30-13 win over Temple. Senior Bill Belton added 92 rushing yards to Penn State's season-high 254 yards on the ground.
SPORTS
November 9, 2014 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - As he was racing down the left sideline in front of his bench during Penn State's best rushing play of the season, Bill Belton had just one thought in mind. Don't get caught. The senior from South Jersey heard the footsteps Saturday but outraced two defenders to complete a school-record 92-yard touchdown run that helped the Nittany Lions break a four-game losing streak with a 13-7 win over Indiana and renewed their hopes to become bowl-eligible. Belton's big play gave a boost to an offense that sputtered yet again, and he starred along with an outstanding performance by the Penn State defense, which did not allow the Hoosiers (3-6, 0-5 Big Ten)
SPORTS
November 8, 2014 | BY JOHN McGONIGAL, Daily News Staff Writer mcgonij@phillynews.com
STATE COLLEGE - Penn State's defense has done the same thing every game this year, and its formula won't change against Indiana this weekend. "We've got to stop the run and make them one-dimensional," Penn State defensive tackle Austin Johnson said. The Nittany Lions will have their hands full trying to halt the Hoosiers' rushing attack tomorrow in Bloomington, but they shouldn't worry about making Indiana's offense one-dimensional - because it already is. The Hoosiers have 35 total passing yards in their last two games.
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