UNIVERSITY PARK -- Quarterback Rob Bolden is doubtful for Saturday's game against Michigan after suffering a concussion last week at Minnesota.
Neither Joe Paterno nor Penn State would confirm the concussion diagnosis Tuesday, but a source close to the program confirmed to the Mirror that Bolden failed his follow-up concussion test Sunday.
Every Nittany Lion player takes a baseline awareness test when he's a freshman to determine how his brain responds when healthy. After the player suffers a concussion, he takes the test again to see which areas of the brain may be affected.
Bolden's performance on the test Sunday was below acceptable standards to allow him to participate yet, and he did not practice Monday.
"He still had some memory problems," Paterno said. "They're going to test him again [today] and see where he is. If you ask me, if we had to make a guess, I'd guess he's not going to make it [Saturday].
"A young man like that," JoePa added, "regardless of whether he's a football player or not a football player, you'd want to be careful about it."
If Bolden can't play, Paterno said Matt McGloin and Kevin Newsome will compete for the starting job this week in practice.
Bolden was injured late in the first half at Minnesota, and McGloin got most of the snaps (24) the rest of the game, with Newsome also getting some (six). McGloin was 6-of-13 for 76 yards and threw two TDs, including a 42-yarder to Derek Moye for his first career completion.
"I thought he did a very good job ... did very well under the circumstances and will get better if he has to play more," Paterno said about McGloin.
Newsome did not attempt a pass but carried three times for 4 yards. He had been sick on Thursday and missed practice, and he was wearing a brace on his left knee, which may have limited his playing time.
"I don't think the knee injury was a serious one," Paterno said. "I think it probably scared him a little bit. But our medical people don't think there's anything wrong with Kevin and that Kevin can compete."
Guard Stefen Wisniewski said being without Bolden won't limit the offense, and he praised McGloin for his confidence and charisma.
"This kid can handle it," Wisniewski said of the chance to lead the offense.
SUBHD: Major challenge
Penn State's defense faces a tough task against Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson, an electrifying player who leads the Big Ten in rushing at 157 yards per game and in total offense at 345 per contest.
End Pete Massaro was coy when asked if one member of the defense will have to spy Robinson at all times.
"It's possible," he said after a long pause, not wanting to give away any of the game plan.
Massaro was later asked another question about one player watching Robinson and replied, "We all have to be watching him."
"We're definitely going to have to adjust our rush lanes this week," Massaro said. "If we let him escape the pocket, there's going to be big running lanes in our defense. So we want to control our rushes and try to get our hands up at the line of scrimmage to knock some passes down."
Redshirt sophomore receiver Evan Lewis has been mimicking Robinson in practice this week to help prepare the defense for what he may do.
Paterno has been impressed by the Michigan quarterback, who has caught the entire country by surprise with his huge numbers.
"This kid here came out of nowhere," JoePa said.
SUBHD: Record watch
It's week eight, and Evan Royster still has not broken Penn State's career rushing record. That should happen Saturday as he needs only 31 yards to top Curt Warner's mark of 3,398.
Royster said he doesn't regret turning down a shot at the NFL to return for his senior season, even though nothing has gone as he had hoped. He has gained just 450 yards in seven games (64 per contest) and is averaging only 12.6 carries per game.
Royster is fully aware how important the rest of the season is for him.
"The end of the season could dictate the next five years of my life, so it's motivating," he said.
As for the record, everyone on the team seems to want it to happen for Royster this week.
"It's about time, right, geez," Wisniewski said. "We're in game eight here, and I certainly thought we would have had it done earlier."
SUBHD: Injury update
* Paterno confirmed receiver Curtis Drake (leg) and tight end Andrew Szczerba (back) will not play this season.
* Defensive end Jack Crawford (foot) was expected to practice Tuesday after missing two games.
8 Backup offensive lineman Matt Stankiewitch is battling mononucleosis.
Cory Giger can be reached at 949-7031 and email@example.com.