STATE COLLEGE, Pa (WTAJ) — With less than 24 hours before the Blue and White game kick-off, our Ryan Risky had the chance to chat with Steve Jones, the voice of Penn State Football to preview the Blue White Game.
Ryan Risky [WTAJ Sports Reporter] Why is Blue White week such an exciting time in Happy Valley?
Steve Jones [Voice of Penn State Football] I think that for some people the passage to the spring is the start of Major League Baseball or the Masters where here at Penn State it’s the Blue White game. You’re going to have upwards of 75,000 people possibly here tomorrow to watch a scrimmage and that just shows the passion and love for Penn State, the passion and love for Penn State Football. They get an opportunity to see all the new players which they’re all anxious and excited about so this has a chance to be a really great weekend here and it’s the first time in three years so I think everybody is just anxious to go out and have a good time.
RR: James Franklin brought in a tremendous recruiting class. The big names in that class are Drew Allar and Nick Singleton. What have you seen from them so far?
SJ: They’ve been really good to this point. It’s helped that they’ve had a lot of really good veterans around them because Nicholas Singleton and Kaytron Allen for example they’ve got Keyvone Lee and Devyn Ford and Josiah Holmes in front of them. Also Drew Allar and Beau Pribula have had veterans like Sean Clifford and Christian Veilleux in front of them and it’s really helped ease their process of getting into Penn State Football, but what I think they’ve done recruiting wise, some of that will be on display tomorrow and I think people are going to have a good time watching them play tomorrow.
RR: You mentioned Sean Clifford, what kind of benefits are Drew Allar, Beau Pribula, and Christian Veilleux going to get just because he’s back for a sixth season.
SJ: They get all that knowledge and a guy that’s willing to share it which is so important. Sean has been through everything through the course of his career here. He can teach them how to watch a film. He can tell them little points during the course of practice that will help them along the way. They’ll also be able to talk to him during the course of the game, should they get in. If you go back to the Rutgers game when Christian Veilleux got in the game he played so well. Who was the first guy who was talking to him on the sideline the entire game and that was Sean Clifford.
RR: Who are some other guys who have stood out to you?
SJ: Well during the course of the spring a lot of guys have. Zakee Wheatley made the move from corner to safety, that’s been a really good move. He looks very smooth there. A young player named Zane Durant has really impressed on the defensive line, and that’s not easy to do to be on the defensive line. Normally it’s the guys like a Kaden Saunders or an Omari Evans on the outside that can impress you coming into this, but then a guy to be on the inside of the defensive line to come in and impress everybody and really make a statement that really make a statement that maybe he deserves a long look at playing time in the fall, that really tells you something about Zane Durant.
RR: A returning player who will be in a different role is Jonathan Sutherland, he’s made the position change from safety to linebacker, how has he looked so far in practice?
SJ: Jonathan Sutherland… this is a great move by the coaching staff because getting him closer to the line of scrimmage is something that’s natural for him. It also gives Manny Diaz, the new defensive coordinator some options out there because you not only have a guy that’s playing that field linebacking spot in Sutherland, but he also has safety skills to go with it so it gives him a wide variety of defensive packages he can turn to because of Sutherland’s versatility.