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No. 14 Penn State’s line gets physical, RB Singleton emerges

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) There’s nothing special about Nick Singleton’s touchdown celebrations. How Penn State’s true freshman running back gets there is something different.

Through three games, Singleton has been the flashiest player on the field. Behind an offensive line that is playing more physical each week, the speedy Singleton has broken tackles and outrun defenders to give the No. 14 Nittany Lions (3-0, 1-0 Big Ten) the big-play potential in the running game they’re striving for this season. They host Central Michigan on Saturday.

”You’ve got to be balanced,” quarterback Sean Clifford said. ”That was the goal in the offseason. The o-line, the running backs, they set their minds to it and said `We’re going to change. We’re going to run the ball.`”

No Penn State back had run for 100 yards in the 17 games before Singleton torched Ohio for 179 yards on just 10 carries in Week 2. He turned 10 more touches against Auburn into 124 yards and scored twice.

Singleton’s most impressive play came in the fourth quarter when he zipped through a wide open hole, skittered around a second-level block, then slipped the rest of the Tigers to cap a 54-yard touchdown. As he crossed the goal line, Singleton slowed to a gentile walk, barely leapt off the ground to chest-bump a teammate and lightly tossed the ball to an official.

Nothing flashy, save for a flex or two as he jogged back to the bench.

It’s why, even though he leads the country with four rushes of 40 yards or more, Singleton’s teammates tell him he has ”no swag.”

”We’ve been counting, I think he’s said 17 words since he’s been at Penn State,” coach James Franklin said. ”Very `Steady Eddie.’ Very level-headed, doesn’t get too high, doesn’t get too low.”

Those are good traits for dealing with the hype that’s building around him. Singleton was the Gatorade National…

Source link : https://sports.yahoo.com/no-14-penn-states-line-170425966.html?src=rss

Author : The Associated Press

Publish date : 2022-09-21 17:04:25

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