Nittany Lions Making Noise: Clark, Royster have PSU headed in right direction.

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Nittany Lions Making Noise: Clark, Royster have PSU headed in right direction.

Penn State isn't just off to a 3-0 start, they're off to a 3-0 start that has the media comparing them to one of the most prolific offenses in college football history.

There hasn't been a team in Happy Valley since 1994 with the type of firepower that the Lions possess this season.

The big question now is, can this team keep up the pace? Granted, the team hasn't exactly played against the top teams in the country, but unlike seasons past, the offense has seemed nearly flawless during the early part of the season.

Darryll Clark has answered all the questions surrounding the quarterback position. Clark, who hadn't seen much time in his first few seasons at Penn State, has shown the kind of playmaking ability that Michael Robinson possessed during the magical 2005 season.

Only this time, Penn State is leaning on three seniors instead of three freshman at wideout, and has arguably the best offensive line in the Big Ten.

Everyone knew the defense would be strong, even with the loss of linebacker Sean Lee, but almost nobody saw this type of offensive attack coming.

Most pundits expected Penn State's offense to be more of the same, despite Joe Paterno's claims that he would institute a new offensive system.

But the team seems to have a speed factor which wasn't present in years past, and Clark seems to be willing to sit back in the pocket and go though his progressions before taking off with his legs.

Add a solid running attack led by sophomore Evan Royster and the difference making ability of speedster Stephfon Green, and Penn State seems set for big things.

The teams first real test won't take place until a trip to Wisconsin on October 11, and if the Lions pass that test, there is a real chance that the team can run the table in the Big Ten.

With Ohio State on the verge of a full blown quarterback controversy on the heels of Beanie Wells' injury, the Nittany Lions are poised to win their second conference title in four seasons.

The only question now is how Clark and the Nittany Lion offense will perform in late-game, clutch situations. Anthony Morelli couldn't get it done in big games the last two seasons, but this year looks different.

The offenses success, and ultimately the team's, begins and ends with Clark, if he can keep his cool in clutch situations, and Evan Royster can provide the type of production at tailback that the team needs, then Penn State could have a wild ride this season.

It could well be the final year in Happy Valley for legendary coach Joe Paterno, he'll rely once more on a athletic and gifted quarterback who's waited his turn, much like Robinson did in 2005.

The success of the Nittany Lions lies heavily on the broad shoulders of big number 17.

 

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