Penn State notebook: Hackenberg healthy for Illinois game
By Chris Adamski
Published: Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2013, 6:09 p.m.
Freshman quarterback Christian Hackenberg practiced fully Monday and is “fine,” Penn State coach Bill O'Brien said Tuesday during his weekly news conference.
O'Brien pronounced Hackenberg as “ready to go” when the Nittany Lions (4-3, 1-2) host Illinois (3-4, 0-3) at noon Saturday at Beaver Stadium.
Hackenberg was slammed to the turf after the whistle on an offsides penalty during the first half of Ohio State's 63-14 beatdown of Penn State this past Saturday. Hackenberg stayed in the game until midway through the third quarter.
Hackenberg has completed 57.8 percent of his passes for 1,784 yards and 12 touchdowns in his first seven career starts. One of last year's top high school recruits in the nation, he has three times been named Big Ten freshman of the week.
Amos back to corner
For the second time this season, one of Penn State's top three safeties when the season began has been moved to another position. This time, it is to a familiar spot.
Adrian Amos “right now is best suited to play corner,” O'Brien said. Amos, a junior, started all 12 games at cornerback last season but was moved to free safety to begin this season. He was back at cornerback this past Saturday against Ohio State.
“I think what gives us our best secondary back there is when he have Adrian and Jordan (Lucas) at corner,” O'Brien said.
“Then, whether it's (Malcolm) Willis and (Ryan) Keiser or Willis and (Jesse) Della Valle, whoever the best safeties are ... but our secondary lineup, as we sit here now, is probably Adrian at corner.”
That means Trevor Williams, a sophomore who played receiver last season, has been bumped down the cornerback depth chart. Amos started in his place against the Buckeyes, with Della Valle stepping in at safety. Willis and Keiser have shared the other safety spot since Stephen Obeng-Agyapong was converted into a linebacker during the season opener.
“Adrian's a great athlete; you can definitely see that, no matter what position he's playing,” Della Valle said.
Possible OL shuffle
O'Brien indicated there could be a new starter at one of the offensive tackle spots. Garry Gilliam and Adam Gress have split time at right tackle all season, with Donovan Smith at left tackle. O'Brien said it's possible that Gress or Gilliam could start in place of Smith.
The official depth chart released Tuesday lists Gilliam as the co-starter at both positions — with Smith at left tackle and Gress on the right. Smith struggled against Ohio State pass-rusher Noah Spence.
O'Brien insisted Penn State's tight ends were targeted “eight or nine times” against Ohio State despite not having a catch. … O'Brien characterized all of his players who had not previously been ruled out for the season as “ready to go Saturday.” … One minor injury O'Brien finally acknowledged was that defensive tackle DaQuan Jones has been playing through a right shoulder strain and a back issue.
Chris Adamski is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at email@example.com or via Twitter @C_AdamskiTrib.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Penn State’s Franklin cherishes memories of time spent in Pittsburgh
- Kovacevic: Big Ben’s contract clock ticking
- W.Pa. engineer aboard missing Malaysia Airlines flight
- Penguins notebook: Beau Bennett returns to practice
- Talented center Sutter is proving to be ‘pretty important’ for Penguins
- Analysis: Kesler still on Pens’ radar as Shero aims to bring back ‘Big 3’
- Tuna fritters: A taste of the Caribbean, with an Italian twist
- Pitt looking to enhance profile at ACC tourney
- Daily Courier roundup: Mt. Pleasant girls reach 2nd round of PIAA playoffs
- Scientists: Test West Coast for Fukushima radiation
- Busy preseason puts Riverhounds in good shape