Campus View: Former Penn State standout loves this team

Penn State linebacker Nyeem Wartman-White during media day in August 2016.

Former Penn State football player Nyeem Wartman-White doesn’t like to bother current players on the team during the season. But he will send the defensive players a “good luck” text before games.

He said it sends the message: “Yeah, I’m watching.”

At the end of last season, Wartman-White decided to forgo his sixth year of eligibility with Penn State. During his last two years, the linebacker suffered season-ending injuries against Temple both times.

Aside from visiting for the Michigan game, Wartman-White will be watching from home, where he’s currently residing in San Francisco. But he’s analyzing the team as if he were in Happy Valley.

“It’s a team that’s complete, and yet to be rolling on all cylinders,” the Philadelphia native said in a phone call Thursday. “I don’t know how that’s even possible, but it’s possible in the world of Penn State.”

“You got a bunch of experience on offense. You got a bunch of experience on defense behind Jason [Cabinda]. I really don’t see a team pulling Penn State down. I really don’t. And I don’t see a team going out there and putting up massive points on Penn State either.”

He said no team will be able stop the Nittany Lions from putting up at least 30 points.

Wartman-White, who attended Valley View High School in Archbald (Lackawana County), is waiting for Penn State to face a team that will challenge its defense.

“Because I don’t consider Pitt’s run game a challenge,” Wartman-White said. “I consider Pitt’s run game a bunch of smoky mirrors and gimmicks. It’s like playing a triple-option team. They just keep moving around and doing other things so they can keep you off balance. I don’t consider that a challenge. I consider that scared to go right at you.”

His predictions for the season? He thinks the Nittany Lions will lose one “fluky” game by a close score, win the Big Ten Championship in a rematch with Wisconsin, and then play Clemson or Louisville in the first round of the College Football Playoff.

After all, he hasn’t seen a Penn State offense this explosive since the Michael Robinson era.

“This is the most dynamic Penn State offensive people are going to see in a while,” Wartman-White said. “And that kid — 26, I feel like this next game he’s about to run for at least 150 [yards], three touchdowns and like four catches. Most dynamic player in the country, par to none.”