Why could it go down like this? This may seem extreme, maybe even ridiculous to some people, especially 'Bama fans, but unfortunately for them they play Penn State 3 or 4 weeks too early. Penn State is likely going to try and run the ball as much as they can early on in the season while they break in their new quarterback. They return one of the premier running backs in the Big Ten, if not all of college football in Evan Royster, as well as most of their offensive line from last year. Alabama on the other hand, while still talented up front, returns little experience to their front seven. Also, If 'Bama stacks the box and forces Penn State to pass, while also losing the bulk of their sacks from last year, they also have two new starters at corner going against a team that returns all of its starting receivers from a year ago.
Penn State will have its hands full with the 'Bama offense, but unlike most of the teams 'Bama faces in the SEC, Penn State always fields a physical defense that won't back down to the physical Crimson Tide run game. Penn State does a better job than just about every team in college football in bringing in and developing their front seven, and Linebacker U will definitely need to reload at LB if they hope to hold Alabama's offense in check.