Monday, December 22, 2014

First depth chart released, still no No. 1 QB

The release of Penn State's first depth chart since the start of pre-season practice still does not resolve the identity of the Nittany Lions' No. 1 quarterback.

First depth chart released, still no No. 1 QB

Joe Paterno has yet to name Penn State´s starting quarterback for Saturday´s season opener. (Ralph Wilson/AP file photo)
Joe Paterno has yet to name Penn State's starting quarterback for Saturday's season opener. (Ralph Wilson/AP file photo)

The release of Penn State's first depth chart since the start of pre-season practice still does not resolve the identity of the No. 1 quarterback.

The depth chart, released Monday on the team’s web site, had the quarterbacks listed as Rob Bolden “OR” Matt McGloin. Both players have battled since the start of camp. Coach Joe Paterno is expected to address the issue at his first teleconference of the season on Tuesday, but it is not anticipated he will name a starter.

The other unresolved positions were at fullback (Joe Suhey or Michael Zordich) and right guard (John Urschel or Johnnie Troutman).

The only surprise was at kicker, where junior wide receiver Evan Lewis was designated as No. 1 ahead of Anthony Fera. Lewis, who kicked in high school and at last spring’s Blue-White Game, was the player who imitated Denard Robinson during preparations for last year’s Michigan game.

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Fera has been in Paterno’s doghouse since pleading guilty to a pair of summary offenses during the summer. He also is the second-team punter, behind sophomore Alex Butterworth. Another kicker, true freshman Sam Ficken, is not on the depth chart.

A notable absentee from the tailback rotation is senior Stephfon Green, who rejoined the team last weekend after he had seemingly been dropped from the team by Paterno early in camp. Silas Redd is the first-string tailback, followed by Brandon Beachum.

Some other notable changes on the depth chart:

--Junior Devon Smith was listed at No. 2 behind Justin Brown at one of the three wide receiver positions. Sophomore Shawney Kersey (Woodbury High) was first-team at another wideout spot.

--Sophomore Alex Kenney, who provides speed whether he's at wide receiver or in the secondary, was the third-team right cornerback. There was speculation he may play wideout.

--The coaches shifted positions at the guard spot, with senior DeOn’tae Pannell now the No. 1 left guard and Urschel and Troutman sharing the right guard position at the moment. After the spring, Troutman was No. 1 left guard and Pannell was the backup on the right side.

--Senior Andrew Szczerba, who missed all last season with a back injury, is the first-team tight end.

--Sophomore Khairi Fortt, who was expected to challenge for the start at outside linebacker, has been moved to the middle, where he is listed as second behind starter Glenn Carson.

--Defensive tackle Anthony Alosi, a Cherokee High product, is the only true freshman mentioned on the depth chart. He is third-string on the left side.

--With Green absent for the time being, Smith will join Chaz Powell on kickoff returns.

--Joe Juliano

Joe Juliano Inquirer Staff Writer
About this blog
Joe Juliano has been a staff writer for The Inquirer for 20 years, covering college sports, golf and the Penn Relays.

Joining Joe this season will be John Stuetz, an intern for The Inquirer and senior at Penn State majoring in print journalism and marketing. This is John's third season covering the Penn State beat. He previously covered the Nittany Lions for the Daily Collegian, the university's student newspaper. A native of Glenside, Montgomery County, John graduated from Cheltenham High School.

For Joe, this will be his fifth season on the paper's Penn State beat. He previously covered the Nittany Lions for United Press International from 1976 to 1984.

Reach Joe at jjuliano@phillynews.com.

Joe Juliano Inquirer Staff Writer
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