Penn State-Wisconsin: A Look Back at the Penn State Rushing Attack

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Penn State-Wisconsin: A Look Back at the Penn State Rushing Attack

*In case you were wondering what I thought on this subject before the game, feel free to check out my pre-game article.*

75 yards, one touchdown.

Evan Royster had 60 yards and one touchdown.

Stephfon Green had 15 yards.

The Penn State Nittany Lions manhandled the Wisconsin Badgers by a score of 48-7—yet somehow these two only managed 75 yards and one score.

You have got to be kidding me.

Of course, this uncanny performance cannot and should not be credited to the Wisconsin defense. After all, Royster and Green combined for only 21 carries and averaged about four yards per carry—not extremely bad, and actually pretty decent.

Let's face it: Wisconsin's Bret Bielema read my article about how to stop the Penn State rush attack, and he was ready to implement it.

But alas! The Nittany Lion coaching staff also read my article and knew the Badgers had to have seen the article and would now be prepared to stop the run. Galen Hall decided that if the Badgers after reading my article were looking for the run, he sure would not let them have it.

This is exactly why Daryll Clark and the Penn State receivers had a field day, with the combined forces of QB-WR racking up 271 yards on 18 passes, and a touchdown to boot.

Now I am confused...

Neither of those stats looks altogether impressive enough to score 48 points.

One rushing touchdown from the running backs and one receiving touchdown. That's 14 points, certainly not 48.

But mix in a special teams touchdown (D. Williams punt return).

Three rushing touchdowns from two different quarterbacks (D. Clark two, P. Devlin one).

Add two Kevin Kelly field goals, and you have yourself 48 points.

Now of course the coaches reading my article had nothing to do with their decision to not use Royster or Green as much. But to be honest...

I cannot think of a better reason. When you're leading 38-7 and you're still passing the ball...

Both players were healthy, and both were not really "stuffed" when they did get the ball. I just think it was payback.

Penn State combined over the last two trips to Madison has scored a grand total of...

Six. Six points over two games. For those of you that are mathematically challenged, that is three points a game.

Not to mention in those two games, Wisconsin managed to knock out of the game two PSU quarterbacks (Zach Mills, Mike Robinson in '04) and also injured Joe Paterno last year.

Now argue all you want with that logic...but Penn State wanted to put a hurting on these Badgers, and they wanted badly to inflict it with that quarterback position, which was anemic the last two times in Madison.

The success they had doing that, in my opinion, was the reason Royster and Green did not have the games they were both capable of having—because I refuse to credit a defense that allowed four rushing touchdowns with stopping the run. 

But the fact that just one of those came from Royster and Green is a bit surprising.

No matter the circumstances.

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