Thursday, January 7, 2010

The Return of Royster Links

In case you haven't heard, Penn State junior running back Evan Royster is coming back for his senior season. Not a big surprise, seeing as he didn't exactly have a great season — a good season, yes, but not great — and isn't exactly making scouts foam at the mouth. After all, Royster isn't the fastest guy in the world, and at 6'1", 213 lbs, he's not the biggest guy either.

But, Royster is a very, very good running back. Like first team All-Big Ten good, joining Wisconsin's John Clay in the backfield for that honor. And while Royster may not be great any one single thing, he is very, very good at pretty much anything you can ask a running back to do. He's an excellent runner between the tackles. He sets up his blockers incredibly well. He has great vision and patience. And while he's not the fastest player in the world, he has more than enough speed to get to the edge and outrun you if he gets behind you. He also blocks very well, reading blitzes the way NFL teams expect. And he can catch out of the backfield with the best of them. Hell, he even lined up out wide a few times this season and caused some nightmare match-ups. I think he has the capabilities to be a backup running back in the NFL, especially with so many teams going to two-, three- and even four-back rotations.

With Penn State starting a true sophomore at quarterback who took very few snaps in this his freshman season next year, teams will be loading up the box on Penn State every week until Kevin Newsome can prove he can beat them with his arm. This will make things even tougher on Royster, who saw his production decline a bit in 2009 thanks to a subpar offensive line. No one would have blamed him if he decided he'd rather get paid, whatever round he was drafted in, than to try to up his stock by facing the daunting challenge of 8, 9 and 10 defenders in the box. Luckily for Penn State, who has an absolutely brutal road schedule next year (Alabama, Ohio State, Iowa, Minnesota and Indiana), Royster decided ultimately that coming back to earn his degree and get one more season of college football was worth it.

Glad to have him back.

Link time …

-Sadly, Jerome Hayes will not return for a sixth season.

A classic case of what could have been. Damn you, ACLs. Damn you right to hell! You will be missed Jerome. Best of luck.

-Talk about bad defense at the end of the game:

-World, don't sleep on these Owls, even after the shellacking at the hands of Kansas.

-Jalen Robison, meet Jerry Dixon:

-His name is DeShaun Thomas:

-That's impressive:

-A history of Gilbert's practical jokes.

In non-sports news, comedian/Howard Stern sidekick Artie Lang stabbed himself 9 times in an apparent suicide. Listen, I have no problems whatsoever with Artie Lang. In fact, I think "Dirty Work" is a vastly underrated movie.

But let me tell you something, if you can't even commit suicide right, you suck. Think about it, you failed at killing yourself. That's the ultimate in sucking at life. Killing yourself is so incredibly easy. If you fuck it up, I can understand why you're trying to kill yourself in the first place — you are horrible at living. Seriously, stick a gun in your mouth. Drink a whole bottle of cyanide. Hang yourself. It's not that hard. Really, it isn't. Anyone who "tried" do kill themselves didn't really try at all. You either kill yourself or you don't. Those who "attempt" to but don't simply didn't try hard enough. Seriously, it's not rocket science.

Flyers at PIttsburgh tonight and of course, Alabama and Texas for all the marbles.

BallHype: hype it up!

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