Thursday Announcement Set for Penn State Football's Bridge Over QB Troubles — Waters?
That’s when Penn State coach Bill O’Brien’s highly touted prospect will reportedly announce if he is the quarterback to be the Nittany Lions’ bridge over troubles – Waters.
That is, if Jake Waters will commit to Penn State and likely serve as the link between departed signal-caller Matt McGloin and incoming phenom Christian Hackenberg, who is expected to redshirt in 2013.
Right now, freshman Steve Bench is the only quarterback on Penn State’s roster. And in 2012 Bench saw action in just two games, completing only 2-of-8 passes for 12 yards and rushing three times for 18 yards.
That’s why Waters’ decision on Thursday is so important.
According to a quartet of Penn State football-related premium websites, the Iowa Western Community College QB will pick between Penn State and Kansas State. O’Brien visited Waters’ home in Council Bluff, Iowa, on Monday and also toured the community college campus with Waters. Waters spent this past weekend visiting Kansas State.
Websites reporting the Thursday timetable were Blue-White Illustrated, FightOnState, ESPN's Nittany Nation and Lions247.
O’Brien had a lot to sell the prospective Nittany Lion quarterback:
He was named coach of the year by several media outlets and organizations while leading Penn State to an unexpected 8-4 record in the wake of heavy NCAA sanctions. O’Brien’s former pupil, Tom Brady of the NFL’s New England Patriots, was slated to make a Monday Night appearance not too long after O’Brien’s visit. Add the head coach’s 2012 success in developing former walk-on McGloin in a pro-style offense and the possibility of Waters winning the starting job shortly after arriving on campus, and there was a lot for the JUCO quarterback to like about O’Brien and Penn State.
Waters guided Iowa Western to the 2012 National Junior College Athletic Association title on the way to the Reivers’ (aka River Pirates) 12-0 record. In 25 career games (and 23 starts), Waters accumulated some outrageous statistics while playing against community and junior college competition.
In that time frame, according to the Iowa Western website, the 6-foot-2, 215-pound quarterback compiled EA Sports-like numbers: Waters completed 458-of-676 passes for 6,270 yards, with 67 touchdown passes and 11 interceptions, while rushing 139 times for 636 yards and 18 touchdowns. Overall, he accounted for 85 TDs in 25 games – 3.4 scores per game. Wildly impressive figures, to be sure.
But for now, the only number that counts is 13 – as in Thursday, Dec. 13.