Penn State Football Notebook: Bradley might try WVU's defense
Share with others:
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Every offseason, Penn State defensive coordinator Tom Bradley visits with Steelers coaches to glean any information he can and implement it into his defense.
This year, Bradley and his staff stayed on the road, ventured down Interstate 79 and met with West Virginia coaches.
Penn State, which uses the 4-3 as its base defense, has had one of the best defenses in Division I-A the past two seasons, but Bradley wanted to visit with the Mountaineers to watch how they played their 3-5-3 defense.
Bradley is tinkering with the idea of using more linebackers in his base scheme this season. Penn State is blessed with talent and depth at linebacker while the defensive line returns just one starter from last season.
"It was a good chance to look at a team that is obviously doing some things very well offensively and defensively," Bradley said. "We wanted to see how they practiced, what they did and what we could do better."
Bradley said he will determine by the end of this week whether the Nittany Lions would change schemes. He said he and head coach Joe Paterno want to see how the young defensive linemen come along in practice.
"We'll work it out," said Bradley, who noted that the Lions played the 3-4 and 3-5-3 at times last season. "Right now we're just trying to figure out who the football players are, and we'll go from there.
"Once we scrimmage and put the pads on, we'll know. You know, watching football without pads is like watching paint dry. Everyone looks good. It's different with the pads. It becomes football. You start to get a feel for your players. I think that's what coach wants to do right now. He wants to get a feel for his players. It's early. We've only had three days of practices."
King only a corner
Being a two-way player had its advantages for Justin King. The sophomore from Gateway High School helped his team win games as a true freshman. But going back and forth between the offensive and defensive units in practice did not allow him to fully develop at receiver or cornerback.
That will change this season. With Deon Butler and Derrick Williams established at receiver and with King in line to claim a starting corner position, Paterno has kept King strictly on defense through the first week of practice and expects him to remain there.
"We recruited him as a corner. That's where he's best suited," Paterno said. "I doubt very much you'll see him on offense."
Scott could redshirt
Penn State coaches have raved about senior running back Austin Scott's offseason workouts but there is the possibility he could redshirt if he is unable to beat out Tony Hunt for the starting tailback job, something Scott has failed to do the past two seasons.
"There's always that thought," Scott said. "But it's only the third practice. The coaches haven't mentioned it to me, so I'm not going to think about it too much. I'm just getting ready for the season."
This 'n' that
Paterno was asked to comment on Keith Dorney's election to the College Football Hall of Fame. "Keith reminds me a lot of a guy who I coached at the Hula Bowl many years ago, Dan Dierdorf," Paterno said. "They were very similar. They were big and strong, but they both had great technique. The only thing was Dorney got an education and Dierdorf went to Michigan."... Penn State will practice in full pads for the first time today. ... Freshman tight end Mickey Shuler was moved to fullback.
First Published August 13, 2006 12:00 am