We’ve been inching closer every day to the start of the 2014 college football season. On Monday, August 4, we will take a giant step as the Penn State Nittany Lions begin practice for the 2014 season. The Nittany Lions open the season on August 30 in Dublin, Ireland against Central Florida in the Croke Park Classic.
Excitement has been swirling all around Happy Valley since January when one of the most sought after head coaching prospects, James Franklin, left his post at Vanderbilt and became the new coach of the Nittany Lions. Since then, Franklin has raised expectations for success, bringing in a new attitude and numerous top recruits who will help in the future.
This season, the Nittany Lions return Christian Hackenberg, one of the best quarterbacks in the nation, along with a trio of experienced, talented running backs. The biggest question mark on offense is the lack of depth on the offensive line. There’s also a question of who will replace top receiver Allen Robinson, who was drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft.
On defense, Penn State has a lot of depth in the secondary and defensive line. Guys like C.J. Olaniyan, Deion Barnes, Adrian Amos and Jordan Lucas will be leaders of the defense. Linebacker Mike Hull, who’ll be one of the top players on the defensive side of the ball, leads a linebacking group that has some depth and experience issues.
Although still banned from the postseason due to NCAA sanctions, the Nittany Lions will try their hardest to compete in the tough Big Ten East division.
Monday will be the first official team practice together since spring practice ended on April 12 with the Blue-White Game. Those 2014 true freshmen who did not enroll early will now be a part of the team at practice.
Prior to the start of practice, Coach Franklin will hold a press conference at noon to discuss the upcoming training camp and 2014 season.
VBR will be live in Happy Valley all day Monday reporting on all of the news coming out of Penn State’s first day of practice.