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Penn State Football: Spring Ball Likely Ahead but Blue White Game Uncertain

Penn State football is continuing to prepare for spring practice but the annual Blue White game is still “wait-and-see” according to Penn State AD Sandy Barbour.

“I think it’s too early to tell right now, in terms of what the conditions are going to be,” Barbour said on Tuesday when asked about the intrasquad scrimmage that traditionally takes place in mid April. “If it were to be today, we’d be limited to about 2,500 in Beaver Stadium.”

The 2021 iteration of the scrimmage did not have a previously announced date.

Barbour also joined coach James Franklin in an uncertain but optimistic approach to spring practice. The Nittany Lions are currently going through normal – as much as COVID-19 allows – offseason training, but the Big Ten and NCAA have yet to issue guidance related to the actual form and scheduling of spring practices.

So for now Penn State finds itself in a holding pattern.

“Unless conditions were to change for the worse, I don’t see us doing anything other than us going through a traditional spring practice,” Barbour said.

That would be welcome news for a Penn State program trying not to go through a second-straight offseason doing offensive installation almost entirely virtually. The hiring of new offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich will bring the Nittany Lions what they hope to be a more explosive attack, and the more that learning process can be done in person the better off it will likely go in a tough opening three weeks of games.

But like all things in 2020 and early 2021, flexibility is key.

“We’re moving ahead and prepared and planning on doing it all,” Franklin said earlier this month. “But [coaching in the COVID era] has taught me a valuable lesson — that I’m going to have to be prepared for whatever comes and we have to be flexible. Right now, we’re planning today through training camp like we normally would until someone tells us differently.”