Good morning! About to leave for my second-to-last picturesque gameday to State College this season. Just a post to supplement the other morning reading…
There’s a decent chance Penn State will go into next season with a group of wide receivers that, through nine games this season, have combined for 29 catches. Starter (and No. 2 receiver) Brandon Felder is going to graduate, and Allen Robinson has a decision to make about jumping to the NFL.
While the thought of life without Robinson is daunting for Nittany Lions fans, true freshman Richy Anderson and redshirt freshman Geno Lewis are the future of the position, at least how it stands now. Each player has 11 receptions this season. Coach Bill O’Brien indicated both could have a more prominent role over the final three games.
Here is what O’Brien had to say about the young duo when asked about them earlier this week:
“Richy and Geno, you know, those guys are young receivers, and it’s not the easiest thing in the world to come in here and just play receiver right away in any offense, not just the offenses that we run. And they’ve improved every week. They work extremely hard. I think for Richy, when you’re a true freshman, it’s hard. You’ve got to get your classes straight, you’ve got a lot of things going on, and it’s hard to always focus on improving on the field. You’ve got to get your outside stuff straight, too. So I think you’ll see a lot of improvement in the off‑season with those guys. Geno is a guy that will play more against Purdue, and I think he’s a guy that we need to continue to try to get the ball to, and he’s got to continue to be a better route runner and really work on that, and I know he’ll do that.”
On a side note, as much as what O’Brien has to say about true freshman receivers is absolutely true, it’s interesting the juxtaposition of Anderson and Pitt’s Tyler Boyd. Boyd has already become one of the top receivers in the ACC, and he’s also in a pro-style offense.
It really makes you wonder what Boyd could be doing across from Robinson and catching passes from Christian Hackenberg (the two had become friends playing together at high school all-star games). Boyd was very interested in attending Penn State, although that interest waned when the NCAA dropped its sanctions hammer. With Boyd at Penn State, you’d have to think O’Brien would feel much more comfortable about the future of the Hackenberg-led offense.