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Penn State Football: Training Camp Mailbag, Ohio State, Running Backs And More

by on August 15, 2016 2:00 PM

With Penn State entering the second full week of practice the season is only getting closer and closer. With that in mind here are a few questions you had about the team and the program at large. Some serious, some not so serious. Have a question yourself? Send over a tweet to @Ben_Jones88 or hit the author button and send an email my way.

Could Saquon Barkley beat Usain Bolt if both were carrying a 50 pound backpack?

Barkley was last tested with a team-best 4.38, 40-yard dash which puts him in solid standing among the faster players in college football. That time is clocked without pads which means in reality Barkley isn't quite that fast on the field. Either way, while Usain Bolt has never run a 40 for official timing, NFL.com worked out that Bolt's 100 meter dash would hypothetically result in 3.97, 40 for the world's fastest man. The technique for running 100 meters is a bit different from a 40, but it's safe to say that Barkley would need a little help to pass Bolt -- even with a little extra weight it probably isn't enough.

Was Breneman forced out because he wasn't good enough for D1?

I think it was more a result of everyone being in different places at different times. Saying Breneman was "forced out" is probably a bit strong to begin with, but it's safe to say that Penn State and Breneman didn't click situationally. You have to remember that nearly everyone, Breneman included, thought his career might have been over due to lingering injuries. To say he wasn't good enough for D1 really doesn't have any basis here considering he played very little and never really got his feet back under him.

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What percentage of the workload does Barkley get? How are the rest of the carries split?

It's hard to know exactly how it will work out because nobody knows how many carries are going to be in Joe Moorhead's offense to spread around to begin with. But that aside it's safe to assume that Barkley isn't going to get less than 75 percent of the carries. Andre Robinson is probably the Week 1 player to work behind Barkley until Miles Sanders is full acclimated to the offense and college in general. What will be interesting to see is how many catches Barkley gets with multiple running backs on the field at the same time, but that's a separate topic.

Chances that McSorley is the starting QB?

Very good.

Which opponent gives James Franklin his best chance at a "signature win?"

Considering that Penn State has four teams on the schedule starting the year in the Top 15 there are certainly opportunities to do so. On the road at Michigan seems like a tough ask, and Iowa and Michigan State come to town so late in the year it's hard to say how good they will be or won't be at that time. Beating Michigan State will never be a bad win, but there's no guarantee Sparty will be as good as they have been the past few years. In the end, as unlikely as it might be, Ohio State coming to town with a lot of new faces on both sides of the ball makes that maybe the best chance to pick up a big win. That's not saying it will happen, but the Buckeyes will be reloading, so on paper it's the best chance Penn State will have in a while to upend the recent national champs. 

Chances that QB battle "loser" stays at Penn State with Zembiec in the wings?

Possible, but you don't get the impression that Zembiec is pushing guys in practice so much already that he could leapfrog whoever doesn't start this season. A lot can happen in 12 months but this isn't a case of a foregone conclusion, or at least it doesn't appear to be.



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