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September 11, 2010 - Ray Eckenrode
Between the Lions: Alabama 24, Penn State 3
Athletic defending champs
outmuscle, overwhelm Nits
First quarter: Alabama 7, PSU 0
> PSU linebackers invisible again on ‘Bama’s first scoring drive, unable to cover receivers or apply any pressure when they blitz.
> Bad decision by Bolden on the first interception, but he sure didn’t get any help from Chaz Powell.
> Musburger apoplectic about pressure from Donte Hightower. “Now, you see why he’s one of the best!” Because no one blocks him on a simple stunt?
> It’s hard to imagine a defense getting manhandled any more severely that Penn State’s was in the first quarter: No pressure, poor coverage, poor tackling. We said it in the second quarter against Youngstown. This group is S-L-O-W.
Second quarter: Alabama 17, PSU 0
> Bama’s offense looks like PSU ‘94 on steroids -- and we mean that figuratively (we think)...
> Oh yeah, except that they’re missing last year’s Heisman winner.
> Let’s get this clear. The whooping administered in this game was not about scheme or game plan or even execution (although THAT certainly played a part). It was about a systematic decline in the quantity and quality of Penn State’s recruiting over the past five years. Alabama had better athletes at 22 of 22 positions.
> Who taught Brent Musburger what an iso is?
> Penn State’s formula for staying in this game involved Alabama making a couple of big mistakes. There was, of course, no way that the Lions could compete if THEY made the critical errors.
Third quarter: Alabama 17, PSU 0
> Penn State going for it on 4th-and-inches? Joe has definitely ceded some of the decision making.
> Bolden has looked fairly calm and collected and moved well in the pocket UNTIL the Lions get inside the Tide 30 and THEN he’s looked like a scared freshman.
> Graham Zug. C’mon man!
> Wow, three field goals and it’s 17-9, one possession game entering the fourth quarter.
> What does it say about this game and this team that they’re being shut out but at this point the offense is the bright spot for the evening.
Fourth quarter: Alabama 24, PSU 3
> It’s a tribute to how good Herbstreit is that we’re in the fourth quarter and we can’t think of one stupid thing he said so far.
> It’s good to see Davon Smith getting more involved in the offense.
> Obviously, Brett Brackett wasn’t able to get the kind of separation against elite athletes that he did against Youngstown State.
> Why would you show that reverse pass trailing 24-3?
> Evan Royster wasn’t a nonfactor in this game. Penn State’s rushing offense was a nonfactor. Sometimes we forget that they’re not synonymous.
The final word: