Everyone knows Penn State. They have a long time coach in Joe Paterno (44th season). They have a great team that gets high in the rankings every year. Starting with the offense.
Last year, they finished the season at 11-2 and lost to USC in the Rose Bowl. They are going to have a tough time going into the season as they lost six starters on offense.
However, they still have quarterback Daryll Clark, who was great in the spread offense throwing for 2,592 yards and 19 touchdowns. Not to mention rushing for 10.
They also have running back Evan Royster, who rushed for 1,236 yards. They have two solid players at tight end and a good sized but inexperienced receiving crew. They only have two returning offense lineman. Once Clark gets going, the offense gets going.
You could say last season that the defense was basically the thing that kept this team going. This year, they only have a very low four returning starters. It's going to be difficult to be the same as last year.
Its secondary is its biggest concern. They lost defensive lineman Aaron Maybin, who was a huge pass rusher and they also lose Jared Odrick who showed good promise at his position. At linebacker, they always find a way to develop All-American players. So they're looking good next year and will lead the team.
For the Gophers offense, I don't think they'll have any problems. Most of Penn States players graduated from last year, so the Gophers are going to find it much easier than it would be last year.
If the Gophers could avoid the linebackers then they won't be struggling to score.
Expect to see most teams underestimate the Gophers like they did when the Gophers upset Illinois last season. So it's going to be hard to deal with the crowd, but all the gophers are really going to do is attack the secondary and show them their passing attack.
For the Gopher defense, again, Penn State is not the same and will be isolating Clark most of the time. All they really have to focus on is stopping the run whether it's the quarterback or running back. If they could do that, they'll be causing plenty of turnovers and could make this a huge upset.
Just remember that the Gophers could surprise everyone and come up with a huge upset. Also remember they have to play at Penn State, so Weber will have to handle the pressure and be a leader.