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SPORTS
September 19, 2014 | BY JOHN McGONIGAL, Daily News Staff Writer mcgonij@phillynews.com
STATE COLLEGE - Throwing a haymaker is normally frowned upon in football, and unless you're Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown, kicking isn't usually used to dominate an opponent, either. But those skills, along with a combination of other training methods, have given Penn State senior defensive tackle Anthony Zettel an edge. Zettel, who has racked up seven tackles for loss and three sacks through three games this year, is using his high motor, flexible hips and swift hands to get by offensive linemen and into the backfield.
SPORTS
September 19, 2014 | By Rick O, Inquirer Columnist
Alex Pechin is recognized the most for his play as Unionville's second-year quarterback, but several colleges are showing interest in his leg more than his arm. In this season's opener, the 6-foot-1, 185-pound senior drilled two field goals, including a 50-yarder, to help the host Indians nip nonleague rival Garnet Valley, 8-6. Because of his booming kicks and excellent showing in the classroom, Pechin has drawn interest from the likes of...
SPORTS
September 19, 2014 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Penn State fans knew at the start of the 2014 football season that they would have to wait for the Nittany Lions to develop their running game before it became somewhat proficient. The Lions are entering Week 4 Saturday against Massachusetts, and the fans are still waiting. However, the advice from senior tailback Bill Belton is basically: Don't despair, we're going to get this right very soon. "I don't think we're that far away at all," the former Winslow Township High star said Wednesday.
SPORTS
September 18, 2014 | BY JOHN McGONIGAL, Daily News Staff Writer mcgonij@phillynews.com
STATE COLLEGE - Avoiding a swarm of pass rushers, Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenberg found a second to breathe, recognized a small pocket of space downfield and hurled a screamer to his receiver for a 14-yard pickup and first down. It was one of the few times in the first half of Saturday's game at Rutgers that Hackenberg, who looked like a centerfielder gunning a runner out at home, was able to step into a pass and hit his wideout. Standing tall in the pocket and able to read the field in front of him, Hackenberg, with his rocket arm and uncanny awareness for a sophomore, is at the very least one of the most confident gunslingers in the Big Ten. But no quarterback, whether it's an NFL Pro Bowler or high school freshman, can be fully effective - or, looking long-term, healthy - when he spends most of a game on their back.
SPORTS
September 18, 2014 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Christian Hackenberg has put up solid numbers in Penn State's 3-0 start to the 2014 season, but the sophomore quarterback could be doing so at a price. Hackenberg was sacked five times Saturday in the Nittany Lions' 13-10 victory over Rutgers and took a hit on numerous other occasions. For the season, he has been sacked eight times - a combination of Penn State's inexperienced offensive line and his tendency to wait for a receiver to get open rather than take off running. The Lions' rushing attack has been of minimal help in keeping Hackenberg out of certain passing situations.
NEWS
September 17, 2014 | By Melanie Burney, Inquirer Staff Writer
Rutgers University officials apologized profusely Monday for the unsportsmanlike conduct of their football fans who mocked the Jerry Sandusky child sexual-assault scandal during the school's weekend game against Big Ten rival Pennsylvania State University. In a one-page letter to Penn State president Eric J. Barron, Rutgers president Robert L. Barchi apologized for "offensive actions" of "a very small handful of our fans. " Photographs taken during Saturday's pregame tailgating outside High Point Solutions Stadium in Piscataway, N.J., showed Rutgers fans wearing shirts that read "Beat Ped State," a derogatory reference to the Sandusky case.
SPORTS
September 16, 2014 | BY JOHN McGONIGAL, Daily News Staff Writer mcgonij@phillynews.com
PISCATAWAY, N.J. - Penn State running back Bill Belton heard the trash talk all week, and, admittedly, it was hard for him to keep his mouth shut. But in a homecoming for 15 Penn State players from New Jersey, Saturday night's 13-10 win over Rutgers gave them something to talk about. Belton, a native of Sicklerville, N.J., created a stir when he stated at July's Big Ten media days that he passed on Rutgers to play at a big-time college program. The chatter between the two sides flowed since, but as Rutgers continued jawing throughout game week, Belton said the Lions made it a point to keep their heads down and not give the game any more unnecessary hype.
SPORTS
September 16, 2014 | BY JOHN McGONIGAL, Daily News Staff Writer mcgonij@phillynews.com
PISCATAWAY, N.J. - Rutgers cheerleaders walked up the empty stands, plastered with looks of disgust. Thousands of zombie-like fans, decked head to toe in red, slowly filed out of the stadium. Some stuck around on the concourse and simply stared at the lit-up field. A night full of "R . . . U!" chants, defensive pressure and hope was undone so swiftly. Rutgers led Penn State for 98 percent of the game - all but the last 73 seconds. But, of course, those were the only seconds that mattered.
SPORTS
September 15, 2014
When: Saturday at 8 p.m. Where: High Point Solutions Stadium, Piscataway, N.J. Records: Penn State, 2-0. Rutgers, 2-0. This is the Big Ten opener for both teams. TV/Radio: Big Ten Network; WNTP-AM (990), WNPV-AM (1440), WIP-AM (610). Coaches: Penn State, James Franklin (1st season, 2-0); Rutgers, Kyle Flood (3d season, 17-11). Series: This is the first meeting of the two teams since 1995 when Penn State won 59-34 at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. The Nittany Lions hold a 22-2 advantage in the series.
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