Penn State/Purdue Game Notes

Story posted October 31, 2012 in Sports, CommRadio by Kevin Gallagher

After a loss at the hands of the Ohio State Buckeyes in Happy Valley last weekend, the Penn State Nittany Lions look to get back on track against Purdue this week. The Boilermakers are coming off a 44-28 loss to Minnesota in Minneapolis this past Saturday.

Penn State comes into the game with a 5-3 (3-1 Big Ten) record. The Nittany Lions are currently one of four teams in the conference that averages more than 400 yards of offense per game and they rank second in conference with 265.9 passing yards/game. These numbers stem from coach Bill O’Brien’s spread offense that accounts for more yards through the air.

Perhaps the biggest fan of the offense is Penn State’s senior quarterback Matt McGloin, who currently posts a 16:3 touchdown/interception ratio (a vast improvement over an 8:5 ratio last season).  McGloin also boasts a 62.2 completion percentage while accumulating over 2,000 passing yards through eight games.

McGloin hopes to have a better showing against Purdue in 2012 after only completing eight passes with no touchdowns and one interception in last year’s meeting. He will also hope to have a more accurate arm this week after throwing his third interception of the season to Ohio State linebacker Ryan Shazier last Saturday. Shazier returned the interception for a touchdown, which gave the Buckeyes the 14-7 lead in the third quarter.

McGloin will have a pair of weapons on offense this time around against the Boilermakers in sophomore wide receiver Allen Robinson and freshman tight end Kyle Carter. This season, Robinson has put up 631 receiving yards (2nd in the Big Ten) and eight touchdowns (most among receivers in the Big Ten) while Carter has made an impact, registering 35 catches for 441 receiving yards (9th in the Big Ten).

On the flip side, Penn State’s defense looks as tough as ever being led by senior linebackers Michael Mauti and Gerald Hodges. The two are coming off powerful performances against Ohio State, accumulating a combined 27 tackles and a sack against Urban Meyer’s Buckeyes. Mauti also has three interceptions on the season and ranks first in the conference with 125 interception-return yards.

The Nittany Lions defense also possesses a solid defensive line, anchored by senior defensive tackle Jordan Hill, who has 2.5 sacks this season. Hill and junior defensive tackles DaQuan Jones are bookended by a talented group of defensive ends Deion Barnes and Anthony Zettel, who each have three sacks on the year. Together, they will attempt to penetrate a Purdue offensive line that has given up ten sacks through eight games.

The man behind Purdue’s offensive line is senior quarterback Robert Marve. Marve will start in place of Caleb TerBush, who was benched by Danny Hope after a five- completion performance against Minnesota last Saturday.

This will be Marve’s first start since the season opener against Eastern Kentucky, when TerBush was suspended. In that game, Marve went 30/38 with 295 yards passing and three touchdowns. Despite these solid numbers, Marve could have his hands full against a Nittany Lions defense that ranks 18th overall in the FBS with 18.1 points against this season.

The Purdue offense will have to get plenty of help for Marve in the form of senior wide receiver Antavian Edison and freshman wide receiver Dolapo Macarthy. Edison currently leads the team with 432 receiving yards and six touchdowns, while the 6’5” Macarthy has eleven catches in the last two games. Last week against the Gophers, Edison and Macarthy combined for 104 yards and two touchdowns.

Sharing the backfield with Marve will be senior running back Akeem Shavers, who leads the team with 432 rushing yards. Despite only registering three touchdowns thus far this season, Shavers averages 4.5 yards per carry on 95 carries. Shavers also has solid size at 5’11”, 203 lbs., which could be a challenge for the front seven of Penn State.

On defense, the Boilermakers have given up 29.8 points per game, a big reason why they are still winless in conference play. However, they have bright spots in the secondary in the form of sophomore safety Landon Feichter and senior corner Josh Johnson. Feichter currently leads the Big Ten with four interceptions, while Johnson is second in the Big Ten with 74 interception-return yards.

In the front seven, Purdue’s biggest threats come in the form of senior defensive tackle Kawann Short and sophomore defensive end Ryan Russell. Together, these two have combined for seven sacks this season. However, they have only combined for one sack in the last four games against Big Ten opponents. The Boilermakers will have to put pressure on Matt McGloin in order to make a defensive statement early on Saturday.

The game will air live at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday in Ross-Ade Stadium in Indiana. Tune in to www.psucomradio.com for live coverage beginning at 2:30 p.m. with The ComRadio Football Pregame Show.

Kevin Gallagher is a senior majoring in Broadcast Journalism. To contact him, e-mail kmg5238@psu.edu.

About the Contributors

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KevinGallagher

Senior / Broadcast Journalism

Kevin Gallagher graduated from Marple Newtown Senior High School in June 2009 before attending Penn State as a freshman that summer. Since his arrival on campus, Kevin has been a participant in the realm of broadcast journalism. His involvement started in Fall 2009 as a member of Penn State’s student radio station ComRadio. Since that time, Kevin has become Production Director at the station, while maintaining Lab Attendant activities as a senior. He is in charge of any on-air content and making weekly promos for sporting events and talk shows on ComRadio. Kevin is also a producer for ComRadio’s Penn State Football Pregame Show, which features guest interviews from professional sports personalities and writers, clips from weekly press conferences and live interviews with play-by-play announcers. Some guests over the past few years have included Eddie George, Brent Musburger and Penn State radio announcer Steve Jones. Kevin is also responsible for the creation and voice in the Pregame Show’s intro for every football game. Aside from his behind-the-scenes work, Kevin contributes to ComRadio’s website through feature articles and beat writes. He also does work through radio play-by-plays of Penn State sporting events such as football, men’s and women’s soccer, men’s and women’s basketball, women’s volleyball and baseball. In the Fall of 2011, Kevin was given the opportunity to participate in Big Ten Network’s Student U broadcast of Penn State women’s soccer. He took the opportunity and provided play-by-play commentary for the majority of women’s soccer games that season. Despite all of this work with radio communications, Kevin is currently participating in the Centre County Report television newscast at Penn State. The Centre County Report allows for students to create their own newscast out of stories and interviews they conduct in surrounding towns and counties. Thus far, Kevin has reported on stories ranging from devastating fires to Penn State’s Blueout football game earlier this season. Not only is Kevin a field reporter for the newscast, but he also provides behind-the-scenes work as producer for both the Centre County Report’s newscast and coverage of the 2012 Presidential Election. Through his experience in television, he has learned how to track newscast audio, use Final Cut Pro and post individual stories to the Centre County Report website. In the Spring, Kevin hopes to use these skills in Penn State’s In The Game, which is a sports-focused newscast. Outside of the classroom, Kevin has also worked as an intern for 97.5 The Fanatic in Philadelphia. During his time at the station in Summer 2011, he was responsible for creating promos, podcasting sound to the 97.5 website and cutting sound clips for producers of talk shows such as The Mike Missanelli Show. Kevin considers his time at 97.5 one of the reasons he wants to be in broadcast journalism. In addition to this internship, he has also had other accomplishments during his time in college. In his freshman year, Kevin was accepted into the John Curley Center for Sports Journalism at Penn State. In his junior year, he was inducted into the Kappa Tau Alpha National Honor Society after obtaining a high GPA in his major. However, his talents are not limited to just journalism. In Summer 2011, Kevin was one of four members to compete for Penn State’s Stand-Up Comedy team in the TBS/Rooftop Comedy National College Comedy Competition. Penn State proved victorious in the competition, which sent Kevin and the other members to Los Angeles as part of the prize for first place. He hopes one day to be an entertainer, whether it be in news, sports or comedy. After graduation, Kevin hopes to either continue his education or find a full-time position in journalism. He can be found on Twitter: @kevgalla24 or at his email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).