Nittany Notes: Fast Times

The winter is not only a time to focus on strength, but also speed. The Nittany Lions recently tested their 40-yard dash times in the program's annual combine. See where the fastest Penn State players stand as spring practice quickly approaches.

The Nittany Lions are continuing their off-season winter conditioning in preparation for the kickoff of spring practice. As part of this prep, the players participated in a series of combine-style events on Monday, simulating an NFL Pro Day. Read on to find out what they did and who were among the fastest Lions.

This "combine" is an annual winter event that has the players participate in a series of events, not unlike the NFL Combine, including:

  • 40-yard dash (hand timed)
  • Vertical leap
  • Standing long jump
  • Shuttle run
  • 3-cone "L" drill

    Although the squad had not been tested in this manner in some time, it provided an opportunity to identify who were among the fastest on the team currently.

    Also, although we speak with a variety of observers, keep in mind that the times shared with us may be limited to specific players. Since the players are placed into groups to run through the combine events there may be other players not listed who have speed within the range of the fastest players posted below.

    Finally, this is a reminder that the speeds listed below are hand-timed. Typically, hand-time runs come in anywhere from one- to two-tenths of a second faster than electronically timed runs.

    Stephfon Green

    2008 Results

    Stephfon Green: 4.25 seconds - "Great off the blocks and uses his whole body to push his stride."

    Derrick Williams: 4.34 seconds - "Had a good run, better than previous years' [combines]."

    Deon Butler: 4.38 seconds - "Probably the most deceptively fast player on the team."

    Lydell Sargeant: 4.43 seconds - "Has improved his stride and is smoother with his motion."

    A.J. Wallace: 4.45 seconds - "Slow starts, but really accelerates well."

    Anthony Scirrotto: 4.47 seconds - "His improved upper-body [strength] helps him get off the line."

    Knowledge Timmons, a top runner from last years' event, is currently suspended from the squad and did not participate in the event.

    A.J. Wallace

    Side Notes:

    • Some of the young linebackers were impressive. Nate Stupar ran a 4.59-second 40, and a 4.2-second pro agility. True freshman Mike Mauti ran a 4.58-second 40 and 4.05-second pro agility. His 6.65-second L-cone was "unreal" and best among the linebackers.

    • Green also ran a 4.01-second pro agility and had a 6.91-second L-cone run.

    Jordan Norwood and Scirrotto were both in the 6.4 range for the L-cone, which really impressed observers who were able to see them in action. These were said to be two of the fastest times ever posted at Penn State.

    Drew Astorino impressed some observers running a 4.52-second 40-yard dash.

    • In terms of the quarterbacks, Pat Devlin did not run due to a "minor injury." Daryll Clark ran the 40 in the 4.8-second range, which was significantly off from his 4.68 second time last year.

    • True freshman running back Brandon Beachum ran the 40 in 4.7 seconds and change.

    • Linebacker Chris Colasanti ran in the 4.8-second range, but came up hobbling and has to ice down after the run.

    By way of comparison, here is a review of who the fastest players were in the hand-timed 40-yard run in March 2007:

    Derrick Williams

    2007 Results

    Deon Butler: 4.37 seconds - "Deon is sharp off the line and gets to his top speed quickly."

    Knowledge Timmons: 4.39 seconds - "He uses his whole body in his stride - it provides good power to help him build speed."

    A.J. Wallace: 4.40 seconds - "A.J. runs effortlessly and has excellent form."

    Lydell Sargeant: 4.46 seconds - "Gets off the line strong and is aggressive with his motion. He's not as smooth as Knowledge or A.J., but has solid speed.

    Anthony Scirrotto: 4.48 seconds - "He's consistent, but still surprises guys with his runs."

    Justin King did not participate in the combine event last year. Stay tuned to for unmatched inside coverage of Penn State football like no other source.


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