Offensive tackle Mike Farrell fielded a variety of questions on his Tuesday conference call including the progress of the line and players, Coach McWhorter, what excites and concerns him and more. Here is a review of his comments.

Mike Farrell answered questions on the offensive line, spring drills, progress of specific players and more:

On whether he's been swapping sides:

"I started on ou left, flipped to right, so we've moved around a bit. The staff wants to see how guys perform at both positions. I think we've continued to improved with me on the right and Adam on the left though."

On the high praise for the offensive line this spring:

"I have seen more consistency and greater focus maybe this year. We have a lot of youth excitement and competition. Whenever you get a new coaching staff who says it's an open competition you know they mean it because they don't have many preconceived biases."

On the advantages to having one offensive line coach vs. two:

"I think from a coaching stand point there are a lot of advantages to having everyone on the same page. It's good to be around the centers and guards from a tackle's perspective. I wasn't around them that much in years past. To be fair though it's hard to compare because the previous staff didn't have to install a new offense with us."

On Donovan Smith's progress:

"He's been on the right side this preseason. He's matured as a player. He's been more reliable and accountable in his role and what is asked of him."

On the general coaching approach with Mac McWhorter and what he has brought to the line out of the gate:

"He did a great job getting to know the linemen off the bat and adjusting to us and getting us to acclimate to his style. We've been learning a lot with the new offense. He's set very high expectations for the line based on execution everyday. But he's also understanding that this is new to us."

On comparing McWhiorter's style from Kenney and Anderson:

"He has different adjustments and techniques, so that takes time. It's hard to compare two coaches to one."

On the S&C program:

"I think the program was a great way to kick off the winter. Everyone is bought off on that and it's continued on to spring practice.

"It continues to go well. I think guys feel more comfortable and feel good and happy with their performance in the weight room. I think linemen specifically have added bulk and worked a lot of quickness - our movement, not just our strength, along with explosive movements, moving laterally in short spaces."

On what concerns and excites him the most at the halfway point of spring drills:

"What excites me the most is that the practices have been tough and we have had to really bear down and improve, but the energy, focus and work ethic has not faded whatsoever.

"I am so excited every practice. We know we can't waste any time and the clock is ticking. So everyone has the right mindset - we can't take a minute off.

"What concerns me the most I guess is when we do some things on offense it's encouraging, but we'd like to see more consistency, but that comes with a new offense. It takes time."

On what he needs to do to become a starter:

"It comes down to consistency. I think some of the guys have shown we can play but the biggest thing is being consistent."

On the leadership of the unit:

"I think that since we only have two seniors Matt (Stankiewich) and myself have put it upon ourselves to step up to try to prepare people for this spring and step up in those roles. I think given what a lot of the guys are doing we're seeing lot of leadership across the unit."

On Eric Shrive:

"He's been working with the second group at guard and been having one of his better springs so far. Coach Mac, just a breathe of fresh air has been good for him. I think he could be someone to contribute this fall."

On if there's a mean streak on the offensive line:

"I actually have seen a lot of encouraging things in that sense this spring - guys have been finishing plays and they're doing that by playing physical and Coach Mac expects that."

On the fast pace of practice:

"We get a lot done and it helps to fine tune our conditioning. We get a lot more reps in to get better at things. Coach O'Brien wants us to play at a faster level than we have played before. That will help us get better. I think it's kept us more focused throughout the duration of practice."

On the excitement for Blue White Game:

"Everybody wants to get out with our new staff and how how hard we've worked and show how productive this spring has been. I think people will be excited to see this next chapter of Penn State football."


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