Running backs? Just fine.
Linebackers? Best unit in the country.
Defensive line? Very good.
Penn State will feature experience and depth and should have very few problems in any of those areas this season.
The rest of the units, however, could be troublesome for the Nittany Lions as they will have to replace key personnel in many key positions.
Twitter with the Mirror
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Lining up with the Lions
The schedule for the Mirror's daily breakdown of Penn State units. See Page B5 for the first one.
Friday: Running backs
Saturday: Offensive line
Monday: Defensive line
Thursday: Special teams
Three of the best receivers in school history are gone. All four starters in the secondary are gone. The offensive line lost three starters. And one of the leading scorers in NCAA history is no longer kicking for PSU.
Starting today on Page B5 and continuing for the next week, the Mirror will break down one unit per day for the Lions as they enter Joe Paterno's 44th season as head coach. Our "Lining up with the Lions" series will conclude next Thursday, the unofficial beginning of the preseason as Penn State will hold its annual media day.
Following this series, the Mirror will continue to help fans gear up for the season with a 12-day series breaking down every regular-season game. We also will have our usual preseason features on various players and units leading up to the season.
Here's one hint about what to expect: I'm picking PSU to go 11-1 during the regular season, with the lone loss coming at Illinois.
Some PSU fans were in a tizzy early Wednesday, shortly after learning Evan Royster was not on the Doak Walker Award watch list representing the best running backs in the country. The Internet and Twitter were filled with fans expressing their anger.
It's absurd to compile any such list and not include Royster, who rushed for 1,236 yards last season. Royster almost certainly will leave Penn State as the school's career rushing leader - if he stays healthy - as he needs just 1,650 yards over the next two seasons to break Curt Warner's record.
So how could Royster not be on the Doak Walker list, which included nearly four dozen others? As it turned out, he wasn't snubbed by the selection committee, it's that his name was not submitted in time by Penn State to be considered.
No worries, though, Blue Royster Cult fan club members. Royster still can be considered for the Doak Walker Award, since the preseason watch list is merely a first draft.
Cory Giger can be reached at 949-7031 and firstname.lastname@example.org.