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Penn State Football: How Did The 2012 Offense Stack Up Against Nittany Lion History

by on July 22, 2013 1:30 PM

The 2012 Penn State football season was one that fans will not soon forget. Coach Bill O'Brien brought to Happy Valley a fresh look on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball that left fans excited and onlookers impressed. But how good was 2012 really? Here is a look back at some of the standout performers on the offensive side of the ball.

Zach Zwinak: For someone who entered the season as an unknown, Zwinak made the most of his chances racking up 1,007 yards rushing. Zwinak is the 40th running back to break the 1,000-yard mark at Penn State and is now just over 300 yards away from former Nittany Lion Stephfon Green who tallied 1351 yards on the ground.

If Zwinak were to repeat his 2012 performance exactly he would pass Franco Harris on the all-time rushing list, good enough for No. 17 just behind Jon Williams' 2042 yards. With six 100-yard rushing games to his name, Zwinak is currently tied all-time with the likes of Rodney Kinlaw and Bob Campbell. He's just one 100-yard game behind Silas Redd. Curt Warner leads Penn State running backs with 18 games of 100 or more yards.

Allen Robinson: Hauling down 77 passes in 2012 was good enough to give Robinson the single season record and his 1013 yards receiving made him only the second wideout to have ever broken the 1,000 yard mark in a season while at Penn State. Bobby Engram holds the single season record with 1,084 yards, bettering his production in 1994 of 1,029 yards. Surprisingly, despite his high level of production, Robinson only has two 100-yard receiving games to his name.

Doubling that figure in 2012 would tie Robinson with former Nittany Lion Jordan Norwood who broke the century mark four times in his career. Engram on the other hand passed that mark 16 times while at Penn State; a school record. Robinson sits 99 receptions away from Deon Butler's school record of 179 career catches and is just under 2,000 yards away from Bobby Engram's career receiving record of 3,026 yards. Robinson's 11 touchdown catches were good enough for a tie for second best all-time with Engram, behind Engram's 1993 performance of 13 touchdown receptions.

Matt McGloin: McGloin had one of the best years as a quarterback in Penn State history registering a program high 3,215 yards of offense in a single season in 2012. The mark saw the Scranton native end his career fourth all-time on Penn State's total offense list with 5,745 yards behind Tony Sacca, Daryll Clark, and record holder Zack Mills' 7,796 yards of offense.

McGloin currently sits atop Penn State's list of 200-yard passing games with 18 during his career, two better than Nittany Lion greats Kerry Collins and Zack Mills. Other records to his name include season passing attempts at 446, season completions at 270, season passing yards with 3,266, game competitions with 35, career touchdown passes with 46, and a tie with Daryll Clark for season touchdown passes with 24. McGloin also fell short of breaking the single game passing yard record with 395 against Indiana. Zack Mills passed for 399 against Iowa in 2002.

McGloin also threw four touchdown passes in a single game on three separate occasions. A Penn State quarterback has done that a total of 15 times with the record of five touchdown passes in a single game shared by Tony Sacca and Rashard Casey.

Ben Jones covers Penn State football and basketball for He's on Twitter as @Ben_Jones88.
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