The Turkey will be leaving for a camping trip immediately after the Outback Bowl, which will deny me the opportunity to write detailed commentary on the entire game. Thus, I am here with observations about the first half.
First, we seem to have witnessed the maturation of Anthony Morelli—finally. He’s throwing passes crisply and efficiently. He’s getting rid of the ball when he has to. If THIS Morelli had played all year, it would have meant at least two more victories for PSU.
Tony Hunt is looking good.
Ed Johnson, the dick, once again is in trouble, suspended from this game for violating team rules. A leopard doesn’t change its spots…
…which brings us to the offensive line. They still can’t block worth a shit. Seems like our coaching brain trust is calling more rollouts, which a good idea when the pocket is short-lived or nonexistent.
The offensive drives have been impressive, but the first one fizzled, as the erratic Kevin Kelly once again missed a relatively easy 45-yarder. My thought was, “Here we go again!”
The defense has been reasonably good up front, with a couple of obvious lapses. Ed Johnson’s absence has hurt. However, we’re still seeing soft coverage at the corners and vestiges of the famous Sandusky prevent defense. Sean Lee screwed up big time on Tennessee’s 42-yard touchdown run at the end of the first half. He should have had Coker in the backfield. The sideline shot after the play showed a seated Lee, head bowed, appearing to be sucking his thumb in self-condemnation. The Vols were supposed to be able to beat us getting passes behind our corners; they weren’t supposed to be able to beat us with the run.
Tennessee incurred a roughing the passer penalty with 20 seconds left and the score at 10–10, giving Penn State an opportunity to take the lead at halftime, positioning the Lions at the 50 yard-line. Giving Kelly the ball for a 54-yard try was not what I wanted, but it was, um, close. (It ain’t horseshoes, man!)
So, the game continues apace, but I’ll have to hop off this train now. It is fitting that it is tied at halftime. I wish you all a healthy, happy, and prosperous 2007, and I’ll be back next week with some closing comments about this season.