NITTANY NOTES: Scrimmage Report

The Nittany Lions held their first scrimmage of the preseason Sunday in Beaver Stadium. Get a rundown of the good and bad from the session right here in our exclusive Nittany Notes.

Penn State scrimmaged for the first time this preseeason Sunday. What went down?

"I think the guys came out fired up. Some were a bit tanked, but most were pretty intense considering they were coming off a double-session [on Saturday]," one observer said.

Unfortunately, it seems that the bad news outweighed the good when Sunday's scrimmage was completed. The session kicked off at 3:00 p.m. and worked some Drill 6 (7-on-7) with a majority of time spent on full 11-on-11 sets.

As one observer said, "You always want everyone to be in mid-season form out of the gate, but it's the first [scrimmage] — you're always going to have some sloppy play, but the coaches will pounce on it to try to clean it up."

Here are some highlights and notes from Sunday's scrimmage:

  • As FOS broke on Sunday, linebacker Michael Mauti sustained an ACL injury. As one observer explained, "He's the type of guy everyone roots for. You hate to see this sort of thing happen."

  • The defense "was pretty aggressive," and managed to contain most of the big plays of the day. In particular, "they are throwing a lot at [freshman quarterback] Kevin Newsome" to get him ready quickly.

  • The offense had "a rough outing." Some observers indicated that the unit was off. "It's not an excuse, but these guys are getting beat, [with] five days of practice and no breaks before they come out here and play a stripped down game. The coaches want to see it, though — who is going to separate themselves?"

  • Daryll Clark hit Mickey Shuler for a quick touchdown strike. "It was a pretty nice delivery and Mick really sold it to get separation."

  • The offensive line saw the primary starting lineup as:

    LG: Dennis Landolt
    LG: Matt Stankiewitch
    C: Stefen Wisniewski
    RG: Lou Eliades
    RT: DeOn'tae Pannell

    Observers feel the line is making progress, but still has work to do. Landolt is still getting used to the shift to left tackle, but the right side of Wisniewski, Eliades and Pannell had a "pretty good day keeping the dogs off, but they have to seal the lanes better."

  • The defensive line "gave the [offensive line] guys a lot to handle." The scheme was pretty basic. Jared Odrick in particular is really a "handful." Also, Jack Crawford is said to be improving his rush technique. "He's getting better dropping a shoulder and making the corner.

  • The linebackers had a starting lineup of:

    OLB: Sean Lee
    MLB: Josh Hull
    OLB: Navorro Bowman

    The offense initially tried to run at Lee, but "he played great containment, although [Evan] Royster managed some inside cuts that got him some nice pickups." The offense then shifted and ran toward Bowman on the opposite wing and "didn't have much more luck."

  • Rookie QB Kevin Newsome saw the bulk of his reps with the second team offense. "He's coming along, but he's got work to do, too." Observers feel he is strong with his drop-backs, but needs to run through his progression. "He's also got to get used to hitting a check-down if things breakdown. He's still looking to use his feet first."

  • Newsome did hit fellow freshman receiver Christian Kuntz on a long out pattern. "It was a nice ball, maybe 35 yards. He hit that after [the coaches] got on him to trust the pocket more."

  • Tailback Evan Royster had some "nice runs." Royster showed some great "block reads" and hit a few 15- to 20-yard gains. "He sees or anticipates things as they are developing. He's impressive. He's got the whole package."

The coaches are "keeping the throttle down" with another double session scheduled for Monday, the second in three days. The first session is set for 3:00 p.m. this aand will have helmets and tops (shoulder pads) and will work on some more individual position and agility drills.

The second session is set for 7:00 p.m. and is expected to have the players in full pads to get in some more contact work in some scrimmage/play sets to get some more scheme and read practice in.

Both sessions are scheduled to be on the outdoor practice fields between Lasch and Holuba. The weather in State College is expected to hit 88 degrees by 3 p.m. with no precipitation in the forecast. is the exclusive source for the BEST content and community covering Penn State football.


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