Tag Archives: Jesse James

Penn State Has Replaced Allen Robinson Quicker than Almost Everyone Expected

(Photo credit to Dave Cole/Onward State)

Perhaps one of the biggest — and most pleasant — surprises on Penn State’s young season is that the offense does not ‘miss’ Allen Robinson nearly as much as many folks anticipated.

That lede is not at all intended to be a knock on Robinson. He would be having another great year catching passes from Christian Hackenberg had he elected to stay for his senior season, but the Nittany Lions passing game is operating just fine with him in Jacksonville.

The two Nittany Lions responsible for this almost seamless transition are true sophomore Geno Lewis and redshirt freshman DaeSean Hamilton.

Lewis’ breakout goes back to the season finale against Wisconsin last year when he posted a career-high 91 yards and two touchdowns in an upset win. Lewis has been in full beast mode since then, recording no less than five receptions and 82 yards in every game since.

Hamilton was lesser known than Lewis a month ago, but that held true for all of about three minutes into the season opener when he burst onto the scene against Central Florida. Since then, Hamilton has posted at least 65 yards in all four games.

After Week 1, both receivers were in the Top 10 in the nation for receiving yardage. After Week 2, both of them remained in the Top 14, and following last Saturday, the duo was still right there after playing an instrumental part in Penn State’s comeback against Rutgers. We will provide a current update here when all of the statistics come in following tonight’s games.

As I have pointed out before in those posts, Penn State was the only FBS school with such a distinction, and Hamilton was one of only two players who did not see any snaps in 2013 to rank that high.

Before the season got underway, many believed that the majority of Penn State’s production would come from the tight ends even with Adam Breneman injured. Jesse James has been very good so far, but as of me typing this, 55 of Penn State’s 96 receptions have come via Hamilton and Lewis.

Chart breakdown below:

Opponent Hamilton/Lewis Total Receptions
Central Florida 19 32
Akron 13 22
Rutgers 14 25
Umass 9 17

What. A. Duo.

The way Lewis has progressed has impressed me even more than his raw numbers. He had his moments last season, but I thought he was a bit one-dimensional in terms of running go-routes. When he wasn’t on the receiving end of a perfect deep ball from Hackenberg, he had his share of quiet games including getting completely shut out against Central Florida, Kent State, Illinois, and Minnesota.

The Nittany Lions have not faced the toughest schedule so far, and Hamilton and Lewis will be tested in the coming weeks, but so far, things are going about as well as anyone could have imagined.

The Nittany Lions were able to get the running game going today in a rout against overmatched UMass, but were it not for Hamilton and Lewis, they might be 2-2 rather than 4-0 for the first time since 2008.

Thanks to the recruiting work put in by Bill O’Brien and James Franklin’s staff coaching them up, the Nittany Lions were much more prepared to replace their stud receiver than many folks realized.

Does Penn State miss Allen Robinson? Of course they do, but things are just fine without him right now.

Update: Working on the fly but two more thoughts for you in tweet form:

Lewis and Hamilton Post

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Penn State is the Only FBS Program with Two Players in the Top 14 for Receiving Yards Per Game

Earlier this week when I tweeted a couple posts about Jeremy Maclin and the Eagles, a few people be like this:

Penn State Content Meme

So I be like: I’ll try.

You asked for Penn State #content, here is a little Penn State #content for you.

I decided to follow up on a cool statistic that I tweeted after Week 1, which appeared popular among Penn State Football Twitter, to see how things were holding up.

Penn State Receivers Week 1

As you can see based on the screenshot at the top of the page, things are holding up pretty well going into Week 3. It may not be Top 10 anymore, but Top 14 still looks solid.

You will notice that Baylor has joined Penn State as another school with two players in the Top 14, but that is influenced by the fact that Baylor has played three games while most other programs have only played two.

Baylor junior Jay Lee jumped up to fifth with 136 receiving yards last night against Buffalo but had been pretty quiet and far down the list through two games.

KD Cannon, who was eighth before last night and now first, joins DaeSean Hamilton as the only other freshman that high on the list.

Just like the Cody Parkey kickoff tracker with the Eagles, we will continue to keep tabs on this and see where things go, but it has certainly been a welcoming sight so far as the Nittany Lions aim to replace Allen Robinson’s insane production that saw him average 87 receptions, 1225 yards, and nine touchdowns during the 2012 and 2013 seasons.

27-17 Penn State tonight in enemy territory. Don’t see the blowout against Rutgers that some are calling for but think the running game gets going a bit, Christian Hackenberg hooks up with Jesse James for another touchdown, and the Lions head back to Beaver Stadium 3-0 for the first time since 2009.