Lions get good win, but problems persist
With the 24-14 win over Temple, Penn State enters Big Ten play 2-2. They should have won the Virginia game as well.
While the victory over Temple was solid, many concerns remain for this team.
For every good decision and throw, Matt McGloin continues to do what he did in 2010–overthrow receivers on deep routes and, when under pressure, heave it up into coverage. Defenses the last two weeks haven’t been good enough to make him pay, but better units await.
Michael Zordich and Zack Zwinak have run the ball better than anyone could have expected. But facing top notch Big Ten defesnes, they likely won’t get the job done.
The offensive line must learn how to handle blitzes, or they will see them on every passing play. Why is this bad? See paragraph #3.
PSU’s front seven on defense is starting to live up to some of the promise of the preseason. Memories of being handled by Ohio linger, however, as those huge Big Ten offensive lines loom into view. The defensive backfield is getting better, but Temple receivers still got open a lot. Forturnately for the Lions, they also dropped the ball a lot. Better receiving corps are coming.
The offense has moved the ball much more consistently the past two weeks, really three weeks. But the drives continue to bog down when approaching or reaching the red zone. Sam Ficken field goals, until he proves otherwise, remain a non-option.
Two solid wins provide much needed confidence as conference play begins. But Bill O’Brien still has a lot of work to do.