Kent State Snap Counts: True Freshmen Take Advantage of New Redshirt Rule

By Dan Smith on September 17, 2018 at 8:21 am
Penn State Nittany Lions wide receiver Daniel George (86) makes a catch and would run the ball into the end zone for a touchdown during the fourth quarter against the Kent State Golden Flashes at Beaver Stadium. Penn State defeated Kent State 63-10
Matthew O'Haren-USA TODAY Sports

Penn State cruised to a 63-10 victory in its final out of conference tune up. And it allowed James Franklin to play plenty of true freshmen thanks to the new redshirt rule. For the first time this season, players can appear in up to four games while maintaining redshirt eligibility.

Offense (74 plays)

Pos. First Team Second Team Third Team / Reserves
QB Trace McSorley (61) Sean Clifford (13)  
RB Miles Sanders (43) Mark Allen (16) Ricky Slade (11) / Johnathan Thomas (4)
WR Juwan Johnson (43) Cam Sullivan-Brown (21) Daniel George (10)
WR Brandon Polk (41) DeAndre Thompkins (23) Justin Shorter (7)
WR K.J. Hamler (43) Mac Hippenhammer (21) Jahan Dotson (10)
TE Pat Freiermuth (38) Jonathan Holland (32) Zack Kuntz (7)
LT Ryan Bates (61) Rasheed Walker (7) Des Holmes (6)
LG Steven Gonzalez (58) Mike Miranda (16)  
C Michal Menet (67) Zach Simpson (7)  
RG Connor McGovern (42) C.J. Thorpe (32)  
RT Will Fries (61) Chasz Wright (13)  
  • Out: QB Tommy Stevens, TE Danny Dalton, TE Nick Bowers
  • Debuts: WR George, WR Dotson, WR Shorter, TE Kuntz, LT Walker
  • Polk Leans Into Starting Role: In blowouts, the position battles often become muddied by the amount of garbage time snaps that get accumulated. That said, there did seem to be a concerted effort to get Polk onto the field more now that he is a starter over Thompkins. The latter did have a strong ballgame, and that may even things up heading into next week. This appears to be similar to Thompkins' previous rotation with Saeed Blacknall.
  • True Freshman Trio: We saw all three true freshman wide receivers debut this week. The previously injured Shorter is the highest touted, coming in as a five-star prospect. Slot receiver Dotson was a constant topic during training camp as well. But it was George who made the big play, catching a school record 95-yard touchdown from Clifford. Along with RB Slade, TE Friermuth, and TE Kuntz, the future looks very bright at the skill positions.
  • More Freiermuth, No Dalton: No word on what kept Danny Dalton sidelined, but Freiermuth was more than happy to fill in the playing time. The team again showed some two tight end sets with Freiermuth and Holland. We also saw Kuntz debut late and haul in one pass.
  • Guard Rotations: Before things got out of hand, we did see some action from the team's redshirt freshmen guards. Thorpe and Miranda both rotated in while the first team was still playing.

Defense (81 plays)

Pos. First Team Second Team Third Team / Reserves
DE Yetur Gross-Matos (37) Shaka Toney (31) Shareef Miller (27)
DT P.J. Mustipher (31) Kevin Givens (28) Fred Hansard (18) / Damion Barber (2)
DT Antonio Shelton (30) Robert Windsor (27) Ellison Jordan (22) / Evan Presta (2)
DE Daniel Joseph (34) Jayson Oweh (31) Frank Di Leo (2)
WLB Micah Parsons (40) Koa Farmer (31) Jake Cooper (7) / Jason Vranic (2)
MLB Ellis Brooks (25) Jan Johnson (18) Jesse Luketa (17) / Max Chizmar (2)
SLB Cam Brown (40) Jarvis Miller (23) Dae'lun Darien (7) / Brelin Faison-Walden (2)
CB Amani Oruwariye (51) Trent Gordon (32) Donovan Johnson (27)
S Garrett Taylor (44) Ayron Monroe (24) Lamont Wade (14)
S Nick Scott (42) Jonathan Sutherland (23) John Petrishen (18)
CB Zech McPhearson (41) Tariq Castro-Fields (38) Jabari Butler (1)
  • Out: DE Shane Simmons, CB John Reid
  • Debuts: DE Oweh, DT Barber, DT Presta, LB Faison-Walden, LB Chizmar, CB Gordon
  • Lots of Garbage Time: Don't look too closely at the counts when it comes to position battles. Lamont Wade's 14 snaps are more about circumstances than anything else.
  • Still No Reid: For the second straight week, Reid did not see the field. He is reportedly participating in practice and in warm ups, so the team's insistence that he just needs more time to prepare coming off his knee injury may be credible.
  • Minor Injury Scares: Shareef Miller left the field after being shaken up, but he did return later. Hansard also left the field in the second half, and did not return. There have been no reports that it is anything serious, however.
  • True Freshman Swap: Tarburton is apparently being shut down for the time being at end after being the fifth man in weeks one and two. Enter Oweh, who flashed a ton of talent in this one.

Redshirt Watch

Pos. True Freshman Played Remaining
RB Ricky Slade 3 1
TE Pat Freiermuth 3 1
DT P.J. Mustipher 3 1
OLB Micah Parsons 3 1
MLB Jesse Luketa 3 1
K Jake Pinegar 3 1
DE Nick Tarburton 2 2
WR Justin Shorter 1 3
WR Daniel George 1 3
WR Jahan Dotson 1 3
TE Zack Kuntz 1 3
DE Jayson Oweh 1 3
CB Trent Gordon 1 3
OT Rasheed Walker 1 3
QB Will Levis 0 4
T Bryce Effner 0 4
C Juice Scruggs 0 4
DT Aeneas Hawkins 0 4
DT Judge Culpepper 0 4
OLB Charlie Katshir 0 4
S Isaiah Humphries 0 4
  • Debuts: WR Shorter, WR Dotson, WR George, TE Kuntz, DE Oweh, CB Gordon
  • Oweh for Tarburton: Based on James Franklin's postgame comments, they may try to retain Tarburton's redshirt. Does this mean Oweh's may be burned? The answer to that question may have to do with the status of the injured Shane Simmons and how long it will take for him to get back on the field.
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