Hey, did you know the Blue-White Game is this weekend? Of course you did, because you are a loyal reader of Roar Lions Roar dot com, and you're currently wearing your Bunch of Fighters shirt while packing your Tuddies sweatshirt for Saturday. You seem like a swell guy/gal.
Luckily for you, you incredibly informed reader, Penn State decided to release the rosters for Saturday's intersquad scrimmage, so you can be prepared to choose your side in this fight to the death. Let's take a look at the roster standouts, shall we?
As they've typically done under James Franklin, one team (in this case, team #BasicBlues) is composed of the projected starting lineup for the 2017 season. However, with many of the starters slated to spend some quality time enjoying the forecasted partly cloudy weather while on the sidelines, here are some names to watch.
Quarterback: Tommy Stevens
Trace McSorley is expected to play no more than a series or two, if at all, so fans are going to get a chance to watch Stevens cook. The backup quarterback/slot receiver/human gadget play/wrecking ball will get a chance to show off his arm in McSorley's absence. He will eventually give way to Billy Fessler.
Running Back: Andre Robinson and Mark Allen
Saquon Barkley will play zero snaps in this game, and Miles Sanders has some sort of injury, which means Robinson and Allen will get plenty of carries for #BlueSquad. Amidst Barkley's ascendance to college football stardom, Robinson quietly became a nice change-of-pace back for Penn State and a great weapon on the goal line. It will be fun to see him get some carries in the open field. And as far as Allen goes, his versatility always makes him fun to watch, especially in the passing game.
Tight End: Jonathan Holland
Like Barkley, Gesicki should play at most the same number of snaps as it took him hands to catch this ball. Holland has been receiving great reviews this spring. He's always been an outstanding athlete (he moved from defensive end to tight end when he arrived in State College), and should have a big role this fall.
Linebacker: Brandon Smith
Brandon Smith is as awesome of a backup middle linebacker that a non-Ohio State level recruiting powerhouse could ask to have. It's always fun seeing him on the field.
Cornerback: Lamont Wade Lamont Wade Lamont Wade Lamont Wade Lamo
Lamont Wade is good at football. Lamont Wade is going to probably start in some capacity this fall. Lamont Wade is exciting. Spring games are perfect opportunities for Lamont Wades to do Lamont Wade things.
Coaches: Brent Pry, Joe Moorhead, Josh Gattis, Matt Limegrover, Terry Smith, Sean Spencer
Two years ago, playing starters versus backups wasn't even all that much fun. But now that the roster is burgeoning with talent, there are plenty of notable names to watch on #TeamWhiteout.
Quarterback: Jake Zembiec
The former Elite 11 participant is in the middle of a very important spring. With four-star Sean Clifford on the way in the fall and five-star Justin Fields just a year away, Zembiec needs to prove that he belongs on the depth chart. Luckily for him, he's not on the same team as Stevens, so he'll get plenty of reps. After him will come Michael Schuster and maybe Billy Fessler, who's listed on both teams. That, folks, is a true ironman.
Running Back: Johnathan Thomas
Thomas has been flipping between running back and linebacker since arriving on campus and is currently back at running back. People have probably forgotten that he was a four-star back according to ESPN and he still has some potential. He's one of two scholarship backs on the team (Josh McPhearson being the other) so he'll get plenty of chances.
Wide Receiver: Irvin Charles
Despite being called the most talented receiver he's ever coached by James Franklin, Charles seems to have fallen behind Juwan Johnson on the depth chart for now. Zembiec will be looking to pass on Saturday, and Charles should be his primary target.
Defensive Ends: Shane Simmons, Daniel Joseph
Simmons and Joseph were two of the highest-rated recruits in their class when they came to Penn State, and it looks like both will get plenty of playing time on Saturday. It will be fun to see two guys with very different styles line up and attack the quarterback in different ways.
Linebackers: Jarvis Miller, Cam Brown
Both of these guys look to have big futures ahead of them, but still need some technical work to improve their game. Miller has enough versatility to have been considered a safety prospect, so it will be interesting to see him covering receivers and tight ends. Brown showed some serious flashes in 2016, and could have a role to carve for 2017.
Coaches: Tim Banks, Charles Huff, Ricky Rahne, Sean Cascarano, Mark Dupuis, Matt Fleischacker, Kevin Smith
Way to ruin the cool run of last names, Kevin Smith.
So, what do you think? Do you see any early contenders for "Player-who-will-have-an-awesome-spring-game-and-then-have-fans-screaming-for-him-to-play-more-in-the-fall" of the year? Will you be wearing blue or white? Will you be playing cornhole or stump outside the stadium? Would you rather eat a potato and feel its pain, or be a potato? These are the questions, people. These are the questions.