With Ohio State and Penn State locked at 0-0 late in the second quarter Saturday, Penn State went deep. Crack open the PSU Playbook and see how the play developed and how the Lions used the Spread HD to set up the big pickup.

For most of the first half Saturday, Penn State and Ohio State were locking horns in a 0-0 tie with a series of punts and staunch defensive efforts from both sides. However, with 3:53 left in the half, Penn State decided to give a glimpse of the Spread HD offense, which was bottled up for much of the night, resulting in a 49-yard strike from Daryll Clark to Graham Zug. It set up the first score of the game — a Kevin Kelly field goal.

The play can be seen below at the 45-second mark of the video below.

Penn State sets up with two split-ends, Deon Butler to the left and Graham Zug to the right. Jordan Norwood lines up inside the right hash. Daryll Clark is under center with Derrick Williams as the deep back and Evan Royster to his left.

At the snap, the offensive line surges left as Clark play-actions to Williams. Butler runs a intermediate crossing route.; However, his coverage elects to pressure the pocket, thinking the play is running to his right. Butler is picked up by the outside linebacker and freezes the middle linebacker. Norwood pulls up to hold his coverage and then runs an outside post. At this point Clark is rolling right and is sizing up the deep pattern.

The offensive line continues to handle the defensive line, but Clark starts to feel pressure as the OSU left defensive end breaks free, recognizing the play-action. He pursues Clark, but at this stage Clark has already seen his target and sets his feet. With Butler and Norwood still on their routes, Williams gets up and sets himself in the backfield to serve as a check-down (and in this case a decoy for the play). Royster also sits to the wide left of the set to hold his coverage in case Clark needs to hit Williams.

The secondary, initially drawn into the play-action, has kept a close eye on Butler, who continues on his intermediate route. But the DBs have seemingly forgotten about Zug, who is on his out-route on the right sideline. Even the cameraman is trying to catch up with the play here. Clark delivers a bomb, which Zug has to pull up on to grab. Otherwise, he is looking at a touchdown.

Zug's hold-up forces him to try to evade the pursuing coverage and results in him getting pulled down at the Ohio State 22-yard line.

Rolling out Clark and using the bread-and-butter misdirection that has served PSU so well this season was actually a rarity in this game, but clearly provided opportunities with the OSU defense. is THE source for exclusive, inside coverage of Penn State football.


Thinking of going bowling with the Nittany Lions this year? Be sure to sign up for FREE updates on the official Fight On State bowl tour packages.

You can do so at this link:

Fight On State Top Stories