Examining Penn State’s defensive backfield picture, Ryan Bates viewed as OL key and more

marcus allen-penn state-cornerback-injured-secondary

Penn State football is the No. 1 topic in We are… Awake every day — but we cover news, notes and analysis from across Nittany Lions sports. Join us each morning to get caught up on everything you missed in the world of Penn State football, recruiting, basketball and more.

Secondary concerns

Andrew Callahan of Lions247 and Mark Wogenrich of The (Allentown) Morning Call both examined Penn State’s secondary situation, with Callahan paying particular attention to that unit’s reset after cornerback T.J. Johnson was released from his scholarship Monday.

The consensus is that little has changed. Johnson was far down the depth chart, and the Lions, who return two starters in the defensive backfield, are facing the same questions as before — the critical ones being, who fills in for the injured John Reid at cornerback and who starts at safety now that Malik Golden has graduated?

Christian Campbell and Troy Apke would appear to be the respective answers, and while Reid in particular figures to be missed, both those guys have played a great deal in their careers.

Ryan Bates, ‘cornerstone’

Ryan Bates switched from left guard to left tackle as a redshirt freshman last season and barely skipped a beat, making two freshman All-America teams and two freshman All-Big Ten teams. Now, offensive line coach Matt Limegrover tells Fightonstate.com, Bates is viewed as a “cornerstone.”

Take the sixth

Two organizations, the Football Writers Association of America and Foxsports.com, are in line with The AP about where Penn State belongs in the preseason rankings. Both have the Lions at No. 6, as reported by David Jones of Pennlive.com, the FWAA president, and Fox Sports’ Joel Klatt.

Coaching stability

In a sign of the uncertainty that characterizes the coaching profession, Pennlive.com notes that Penn State is one of just 17 schools to return its entire staff from 2016.

Recruiting matters

Tyler King of the Daily Collegian takes a look at Penn State’s heralded 2018 recruiting class, while Brian Dohn of Scout.com interviews Maasai Maynor, a 2019 quarterback prospect from Jersey City, N.J., who has camped at Penn State. In addition, Land of 10’s Tyler Donohue examines the Lions’ 2020 targets.

Also in the Land of 10

Miss previous editions of the Wakeup Call? They can be found here.

The post Examining Penn State’s defensive backfield picture, Ryan Bates viewed as OL key and more appeared first on Land of 10.

Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.

Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.