Coach: Joe Paterno
317-83-3, 34 years
1999 Record: 10-3
Aug 28 Arizona Won 41-7
Sep 04 Akron Won 70-24
Sep 11 Pittsburgh Won 20-17
Sep 18 @Miami (FL) Won 27-23
Sep 25 Indiana Won 45-24
Oct 09 @Iowa Won 31-7
Oct 16 Ohio State Won 23-10
Oct 23 @Purdue Won 31-25
Oct 30 @Illinois Won 27-7
Nov 06 Minnesota Lost 23-24
Nov 13 Michigan Lost 27-31
Nov 20 @Michigan State Lost 28-35
Dec 28 Texas A&M Won 24-0
1999 Final Rankings
AP-11,  BCS-11,  Coaches-11
2000 Outlook

The season will be a success if the Nittany Lions repeat the win total of last season. A nine-win season will be a huge accomplishment after losing so much talent. Penn State was loaded last season and failed to get it done. After having such high hopes to start the season PSU lost it's last three regular season games to wind up in San Antonio and the Alamo Bowl. Penn State is loaded at O but it all breaks down if QB Rashard Casey doesn't play. The defense will be worse as there's no way they can lose that much talent and be a better team. Unlike last year, there's no talk of a national championship. Everyone else may project a rebuilding year for the Lions. But Joe Paterno, who likes the players he has, can't bring himself to agree. Speaking of which JoPa just signed a five year contract extension and he needs only 8 wins to pass the legendary Bear Bryant. The schedule finds 12 teams on it as the first test will be USC in the Kickoff Classic in East Rutherford. They're still Penn State and are certain to win their share of games. The Bear's record goes down.
Projected record: 8-5

Penn State 2000 Schedule

QB - 2 ?? DL - 3.5
RB - 3.5 LB - 3
WR - 3 DB - 2
OL - 2.5  




Nowhere is the talent more situated than in the backfield. Surprisingly though the running unit has been shaky. Junior Eric McCoo led Penn State in rushing in each of his first two seasons. However, Paterno says that Eric will be pushed this fall as bruisers Larry Johnson and Omar Easy figure to see increased playing time. Coaches are raving about both fullbacks as they are very solid. After sharing the job with Kevin Thompson the last two years, quarterback Rashard Casey looked to be the sole starter in 2000. But an offseason arrest for attacking a police officer has created many concerns in Happy Valley as he may not get to start or even play for that matter, which could be devastating to the PSU offense. If he can't play , Matt Senneca will be the man. He has limited mobility, no experience, and an OK arm finishing last season with just two passing attempts with one completion and one interception. There is also great concern with the men up front. Penn State has not had a consistent line in quite some time. Injuries took its toll last year but if tackle Kareem McKenzie had left for the NFL draft he would have been a first round pick. At wide receiver Chafie Fields is gone but Eddie Drummond is the next star, finishing second in '99 right behind Fields in receptions and scoring.
QB Matt Senneca 6-3 226 So. Rashard Casey 6-1 205 Sr.
FB Mike Cerimele 5-10 237 Sr. R.J. Luke 6-3 243 Jr.
RB Eric McCoo 5-10 208 Jr.   Omar Easy 6-1 249 Jr.
WR Eddie Drummond 5-9 182 Jr.   Rod Perry 5-10 188 Jr.
WR Sam Crenshaw 6-2 199 Sr.   Bryant Johnson 6-2 196 So.
T Kareem McKenzie 6-7 321 Sr.   Gus Felder 6-5 317 Jr.
G Jordan Caruso 6-4 300 Sr.   Joe Hartings 6-4 270 Jr.
C Francis Spano 6-1 286 Sr.   Joe Iorio 6-3 292 So.
G Josh Mitchell 6-4 289 Jr.   Tyler Lenda 6-3 264 So.
T Matt Schmitt 6-4 293 So.   Imani Bell 6-4 312 Sr.
TE Tony Stewart 6-5 272 Sr.   John Gilmore 6-4 265 Jr.
K Ryan Primanti 5-11 206 Sr.   Dave Kimball 6-1 180 Fr.
Returning starters in bold.

Key Losses: Kevin Thompson-QB, Chafie Fields-WR, Corey Jones-WR, Gabe Tincher-OL,
Eric Cole-OL, John Blick-OL, Cordell Mitchell-TB, Aaron Harris-FB, Travis Forney-K

In all, nine starters are gone, gone, gone. Though lots of talent has departed, Penn State is loaded with potential studs and so the defense should be better than expected. Defensive end Justin Kurpeikis is going to be one of the outstanding players in college football after moving out from under the shadow of Courtney Brown. He will be joined by the other returning starter Jimmy Kennedy who also can dominate. Coaches will not forget that they must replace all three members of the best linebacking corps in the nation and will need to focus on what they have now. While the new three won't be as good, don't be surprised if the trio, especially Shamar Finney, surprise with their production. Even without defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky, they're still Linebacker U. There will also be four new faces in the secondary, but most of them have seen plenty of action. So the secondary will not be the trouble spot most folks expect it to be unless injuries take their toll, since there is little experience beyond the starters. The key will be for Kurpeikis and the rest of the DL to get a pass rush. A new punter and kicker must be found and the positions are up for grabs. Look for incoming freshman and Parade All-American Dave Kimball to have an immediate impact while trying to step in for departed kicker Travis Forney.
DE Bob Jones 6-5 261 Jr. Michael Haynes 6-3 254 So.
DT Anthony Adams 6-0 276 So. Tim Falls 6-3 272 So.
DT Jimmy Kennedy 6-5 329 So.   T.J. Gholston 6-3 285 So.
DE Justin Kurpeikis 6-4 255 Sr.   Dave Jens 6-1 242 So.
OLB Eric Sturdifen 6-2 232 Sr.   Horace Dodd 6-1 210 Fr.
MLB Brandon Steele 5-11 247 Sr.   Ron Graham 6-2 257 Jr.
OLB Aaron Gatten 6-1 222 Sr.   Shamar Finney 6-2 236 Jr.
CB Bruce Branch 5-11 190 Jr.   Mike Johnson 6-0 183 So.
CB Bhawoh Jue 6-1 196 Sr.   Yaacov Yisreal 5-11 191 Fr.
SS James Boyd 6-0 206 Sr.   Shawn Mayer 6-0 195 So.
FS Titcus Pettigrew 6-0 213 Sr.   Bryan Scott 6-2 212 So.
P David Royer 6-3 210 So.          
Returning starters in bold.

Key Losses: Courtney Brown-DE, David Fleischhauer-DT, LaVar Arrington-LB,
Brandon Short-LB, Mac Morrison-LB, David Macklin-DB, Derek Fox-DB,
Anthony King-DB, Askari Adams-DB, Pat Pidgeon-P