The Pigksin Stew Blog

BLITZING SEVEN: Tackling Trump, Saquon's Place in History, Style Points and Friday Night Lights

1. Where Saquon Ranks Among The Greats: As a guy with a long knowledge of Penn State football, I’ve been asked to "rank" Saquon Barkley among the all-time Nittany Lion greats. His career has already been special. But ranking players across generations is impossible. You can argue either way. While Barkley catches passes, runs the ball and returns kicks Lenny Moore did all of that AND played defense at a time when guys didn’t come off the field. On the flip side when Lenny Moore played, the game was less integrated and was not as open to all the best players. In defense of players like Larry Johnson or Curt Warner the tackling in that era was much better than it is now…..around and around you

Under The Radar: Contenders Have Holes, Coaching Barkley, Michigan QB & Tobacco Road

1. Contenders Have Work to Do: #1 Alabama and #2 Clemson look to be complete teams. On their heels are #3 Oklahoma, #4 Penn State #5 USC and all have work to do. For Oklahoma after surrendering 41 points to Baylor, their defense has got to improve if they are going to run beat TCU and Oklahoma State. For Penn State they have the elite tailback, but after four games the big wide receivers and tight end downfield plays have been hard to come by. Against the better secondary units they will struggle to score points and improve their lagging third down conversion rate. USC has to eliminate turnovers on offense, establish a more consistent run game and play better defense. The season is still you

BLITZING SEVEN: The Run for The Heisman, Strange Happenings in Iowa after Dark and Is Sparty Back?

1. Is Sparty back? Michigan State hosts Notre Dame as the Spartans continue to rebound from a disappointing 2016 season. What happened? In keeping with the Spartans/Ancient Greek lore theme there is a lesson. As often happens when a program’s recruiting rankings soar a team's character changes, The Icarus moment arrived as they flew too close to the sun. This team looks like the recent hard-nosed tough Big Ten Title Spartan teams. Notre Dame Coach Brian Kelley made that point this week. MSU is running for over 250 yards per game while allowing just 203 yards total defense. One glaring un-Spartan problem is fumbling. That will have to change Saturday night. They may not be a Big Ten contender

UNDER THE RADAR: Florida--Can I Get an Amen?

1. Not Really a Hail Mary: Florida’s last second touchdown to beat Tennessee has been labeled a “Hail Mary” in multiple media stories but it really wasn’t. Hail Mary’s usually involve three receivers to one side all running to the same area and the quarterback throwing a jump ball. As such the defense has more guys deep. With the game tied Florida did not show a Hail Mary formation. Tennessee played a standard coverage that gave Florida a chance to hit a deep post against the safety. The quarterback had some options underneath so it was less of a "Hail Mary" and more of a “Can I get an Amen!” 2. Clemson Gets a Louisville Bump: After this weekend some people have already determined that Alaba

BLITZING SEVEN: Racism, Big 12's Big Weekend & Lamar Jackson Bandwagon is Back

1. Racism Rears its Head In College Station: After the week 1 collapse against UCLA Texas A&M Head Coach Kevin Sumlin received a racist letter. Sadly given the passions involved it is not surprising. Those who point to the letter as a product of some newly racist climate in America haven’t been paying attention. These types of letters have appeared at a number of schools for years. In 2000 Penn State’s starting quarterback was black and was falsely accused of hitting a white police officer. I was the quarterbacks coach at the time. After Joe Paterno refused to suspend him, letters and e-mails received by our quarterback, head coach and by me contained the same menacing racist rhetoric aimed

Under The Radar: Class Counts, Follow The Money and Shoveling

1. What Happened to Winning with Class? After winning at Ohio State, Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield grabbed a large OU flag ran around the end zone and then headed towards midfield. There he planted the flag while his teammates jumped up and down on the Ohio State logo. It was a classless move. But given the amount of trolling on social media and in the media by coaches, players and fans, it is not surprising. While players are young and in the immediate exuberance of a big road win they may act in ways that reflect poorly, coaches should take those moments to teach class. And while OU may think they are done with Ohio State, if the Buckeyes were to run the table with wins over Penn Sta

BLITZING 7: Road Warriors, Big Brother and AARP's Maize and Blur Defense

1. Big Brother/Little Brother Keystone Edition: Penn State and Pitt play Saturday for the 98th time in a Rivalry that was once an annual season-ending game as bitter as any in college football. While the rivalry faded with Penn State joining the Big Ten, Pitt fans kept harboring a venomous dislike for Penn State. Penn State fans tended to be dismissive of Pitt much like the Panthers were the pesky little brother that kept wanting to play with you and your friends. Well Pitt Coach Pat Narduzzi knows how to play the Big Brother/ Little Brother scenario. He learned from his time at Michigan State working for Coach Mark Dantonio whose Spartans played and beat “big brother” Michigan in seven of t

Under The Radar: What You May Have Missed in Week 1

For those who turned off the UCLA-Texas A&M game with the Aggies leading 44-10 with 2:49 to go in the 3rd quarter…..I'm sure you know by now that the Bruins came back to win 45-44 in one of the biggest comebacks in major college football history. Certainly Josh Rosen deserves a lot of credit for the way he ran the team the last 17+ minutes of the game, but here are some things that you may have slipped under your radar. 1. UCLA’s defense changed up some schemes forcing Texas A&M into more passing downs where they really struggled. 2. Texas A&M failed clock management. With a big lead they stayed in a hurry-up approach leaving 13-15 seconds on the play clock each play that added up to minutes

BLITZING SEVEN: Opening Weekend

On every Friday during the season Pigskin Stew brings you the feature "BLITZING SEVEN" which is an all-out Blitz committing everyone in the secondary to Man coverage. BLITZING SEVEN will feature Seven things for the upcoming weekend. This Week it is opening weekend (and yes there were 4 games played last weekend). 1. All Eyes on Texas: It’s been a brutal several days for the Texas Gulf Coast and Louisiana with Hurricane Harvey dumping rainfall in proportions that can only be described as Biblical. Even at games in parts of the state spared the flooding and devastation, the disaster will keep many fans from games at Texas, Texas Tech, SMU or Baylor. The thoughts of everyone in the college foo

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© 2014 Jay Paterno