Penn State Nittany Lions: 5 questions

5 Questions: MLB Glenn Carson

July, 26, 2013
7/26/13
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Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is middle linebacker Glenn Carson, a senior and three-year starter who racked up 85 tackles last season. He's the most-experienced player on the defense.

NittanyNation: You label yourself an old-school player. Tell me, why is that? What is it about you that makes you old school?

Glenn Carson: Why do I? I just really feel that I was born in the wrong era, man. I would love to play in the '80s when they're just running the ball every time. That's really what I love, stopping the run, playing the run -- and I just love the old, physical style of play.

In high school, I was kind of in a league where they did run the ball a lot. But, yeah, I just love hitting. I love strapping up and putting my head into someone else's. That's really why I play the game.

NN: You've made a lot of big hits in your time at Penn State. What's one hit that really sticks out in your mind, that really made you feel good afterward?

GC: The only one I can think of is that Temple game. I saw it the other day, like on a highlight thing or whatever. A Temple player was trying to run outside, and he kind of jumped up a little bit and I put my head right into his gut toward the sidelines. I was pretty fired up, yeah. [Editor's note: Carson appears to be talking about the hit at the 1:11 mark of this video.]

NN: You weren't an every-down linebacker last season, since Mike Hull came in on passing downs. What did that feel like, coming off the field at times like that?

GC: It was definitely hard coming out on those third downs, especially when the game was on the line and we were up by a touchdown and the other team's trying to drive the ball down the field and we're in that nickel package. And what's when I want to be on the field, when the game's on the line.

It was definitely painful and nerve-wracking. I just want to be out there. I would play the whole game, and now the game's really on the line, and it's crunch time, and I was on the sidelines. It's really painful, but I'm looking forward to being the guy who never comes off the field this year.

NN: Obviously a big reason you weren't on the field every down was for pass-coverage reasons. What have you done to shore up that aspect of your game? And what specifically do you think kept you off the field?

GC: Just working on individual drills, like look-search drills and practicing getting to the curl and making sure my drop has gotten a little bit better.

Just like little things here and there. Mike Hull is a really quick, fast guy so he was really good on those third downs. And I would say maybe a little speed, and I was a little nicked up, so that could've been a factor as well.

NN: Without Mauti and Gerald Hodges on the team, I imagine you'll be looked up to as more of a leader this season. Have you done anything differently to take on that role, or do you feel any different?

GC: You know, I'm not really doing that much different. I think we got a bunch of guys who love to play football, love to complete and are doing all the right things -- which makes my leadership role easy, because I don't have to drag guys out to 7-on-7s. They want to do it.
Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is Brandon McIlwain, a 2016 quarterback out of Newtown (Pa.) Council Rock North who's also one of PSU's early targets at the position. He attended a one-day PSU camp last month.

NittanyNation: You've been to a few camps this summer: PSU, South Carolina, Temple, Rutgers. So, tell me, how did PSU's camp stack up against those? How was it different?

Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is Jared Wangler, a three-star linebacker out of of Warren (Mich.) De La Salle Collegiate who recently earned an invitation to the Under Armour Game. Wangler committed to PSU back in May.

NittanyNation: You recently earned an invitation to the Under Amour Game, which only goes out to the top players in the country. So what was it like receiving that invitation?


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5 Questions: 2015 CB John Reid 

July, 5, 2013
7/05/13
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Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is John Reid, a 2015 cornerback out of Philadelphia (Pa.) St. Joseph's Prep who already holds an offer from Penn State. He recently attended PSU's three-day camp.

NittanyNation: What was it like learning from defensive coordinator John Butler and safeties coach Anthony Midget at the camp?


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Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is Marcus Allen, a three-star 2014 safety out of Upper Marlboro (Md.) Wise, who committed to Penn State last month and visited PSU for Wednesday's cookout.

NittanyNation: You were one of the commits there for Wednesday's cookout. So, tell me, what was your favorite part about that whole experience?

Marcus Allen: My favorite part was just bringing all the recruits together and interacting and getting to speak to some recruits that didn't commit yet and just trying to persuade them. It made me feel right at home, like I made the right decision. I feel very comfortable with where I'm going to college.


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5 Questions: DT Parker Cothren 

June, 21, 2013
6/21/13
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Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is incoming freshman DT Parker Cothren, who'll arrive on campus today. He'll be driving from Hazel Green, Ala., and he remained committed to PSU despite late offers from the likes of Auburn, Tennessee and Vanderbilt. He'll be roommates with defensive end Garrett Sickels.


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Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is David Dowell, a 2015 WR/DB out of Lakewood (Ohio) St. Edward who visited Penn State for a June 1 camp. He doesn't yet hold an offer, but he was one of the players whom PSU singled out.


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Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is Marcus Allen, a 2014 commit from Upper Marlboro (Md.) Wise who's slotted to play free safety for the Nittany Lions. Allen pledged on May 10 and was Penn State's eighth commit of the class.


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5 Questions: 2014 OT Noah Beh 

May, 31, 2013
5/31/13
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Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is Noah Beh, an offensive tackle out of Scranton (Pa.) Prep who's nearing a decision. He'll be at PSU on Saturday and is currently leaning toward the Nittany Lions.


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Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is Todd LaRocca, a 2016 quarterback out of Henrietta (N.Y.) Rush Henrietta who plans to attend Penn State's camp June 8. RecruitingNation named him as one of the top underclassmen at New Level Athletics' 7-on-7 Midwest Regional in March.


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Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is J.J. Cosentino, a four-star quarterback out of Pittsburgh (Pa.) Central Catholic. Cosentino committed to Florida State but recently received an offer from Penn State and has been recruited by the in-state program since his freshman season.

NittanyNation: Penn State's offer came when you already had committed to Florida State, so what was your reaction with that offer? Did it change anything?


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Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is 2014 PSU commit Chris Godwin, a four-star wideout out of Middletown (Del.) High School. Godwin committed a little more than a week ago and became the third wideout of the Nittany Lions' class.

NittanyNation: How do you feel about having two other wideouts in this class right now? Is that a concern, or is it that good for you?


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5 Questions: CB Stephon Morris

April, 19, 2013
4/19/13
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Stephon MorrisJustin K. Aller/Getty Images

Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is cornerback Stephon Morris, an All-Big Ten honorable mention who is hoping to be drafted next week.

NittanyNation: You ran an official 4.35 on your pro day. Just how much has that helped you with getting NFL teams' attention, and how confident are you about being drafted now?

Stephon Morris: It helped me a lot. My draft stock has been tremendously high, just talking to my agents, and a lot of teams are interested, and a lot of teams are big on me. But I feel like I got four years worth of film and started 26 games -- so the only thing I really needed to prove to the scouts, especially coming up to Penn State, was that I wasn't a typical stiff, slow corner because that's how I feel they judge us.

But when I ran that, I think my stock really went higher. I don't know my draft grade right now -- some say between the fourth and seventh, so who knows? But whether I get drafted or not, I just want a chance to prove I can play at this level.

NN: You said teams approached you after pro day and commented how they wished they would've seen more of you in man coverage. Where do you think you'd be now if you had played in this defense for all four seasons?

SM: I feel that I would've been one of the top corners in the country. I started my freshman career off in the nickel, and we had guys like NaVorro [Bowman] and Sean [Lee] and everybody, so it made everything easier. So, some games, I wasn't starting and I ended up getting on the freshman All-Big Ten team and I was kind of free. I would play man then. But then -- my sophomore, junior year -- we weren't really a blitzing team, so I played more of a Cover-3 and jumping routes. I didn't really play much man between junior and sophomore year. But coach [Ted] Roof, you know he's going to blitz you.

I feel like if I would've played in Roof's scheme or someone's like Ohio State or Virginia Tech, I would've been one of the top corners in the country, hands down.

NN: Mr. Irrelevant signed a contract last year for $400,000 with a $45K signing bonus. And practice squad players can make upwards of six figures. So, if everything goes as planned, what's the first thing you plan to buy?

(Read full post)

Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is Kyle Searfoss, a run-on linebacker out of Lewisberry (Pa.) Red Land who committed to Penn State in January. He chose the Nittany Lions over a walk-on offer from Towson and partial scholarships at several Division II schools.

NittanyNation: Bill O'Brien said himself that linebacker depth is a concern this season. What is your mindset with hearing that? Does that increase your expectations at all?


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Every week, NittanyNation will pose five questions to a recruit, player, alum or coach about all things Penn State.

This week's subject is Brandon Smith, a run-on linebacker out of Lewisburg (Pa.) High School who committed to Penn State in January. He chose the Nittany Lions over offers from FCS schools Penn and Princeton.

NittanyNation: Between Ben Kline recovering from surgery and Zayd Issah's situation, depth at linebacker isn't all that great this year. Bill O'Brien has said as much, so it seems like your role is more important now. What's your approach with that, and what do you think that does for you?

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