I already wrote about the linebackers a few weeks ago, so it makes sense I'm writing about one of them again. Not only that, I get to write about one of my favorite players on the entire team.
How He Got Here
Wartman-White was a 3-star recruit in the class of 2012, with a solid, but not amazing, offer list. He was the 19th best player in Pennsylvania, 62nd nationally at his position. He redshirted his freshman season after an injury against Virgina, which sidelined him for all of 2012. He's since slowly, but surely, established himself as a staple in the linebacking corps.
Wartman-White has followed a similar path so far as Mike Hull. He redshirted his freshman season, then started a few games in his redshirt freshman season. He immediately showed potential once he took the field full time, even if the results on the field left something to be desired at times. Like Hull, Wartman-White was slowed down by injuries a few times, but continued to work towards getting better and producing more.
One important aspect of his performance so far has been his ability to substantially increase his production year by year. Wartman-White had as many solo tackles in 2014 as he had total tackles in 2013, with 3.5 tackles for loss and an interception. He was more involved all over the field, making his presence felt in almost every play.
What to Expect in 2015
If his recent trajectory is any indication, Nyeem Wartman-White is poised to have a very successful season. He'll slide in to Middle Linebacker, and I expect him to be a force to be reckoned with. I expect him to naturally embrace the leadership role now that Hull is gone, even if he'd like you to believe otherwise:
"I’m one of 11 people," Wartman-White said. "…I don’t think [moving to middle linebacker] changes my role in this team. Some people think I’m now the leader. I’m not the pre-determined leader. You’ve got to earn that respect from your teammates."
He may not have 75 solo tackles this season, but I expect him to get at least 50, with a couple of interceptions to boot. Like he's shown so far, I expect him to be all over the field and have his presence felt in nearly every play.
Lastly, let me allow Wartman-White himself to tell you a bit about what to expect*:
*Not gonna lie, I was ready to run through a wall after seeing that video.
How the Top 10 Players Were Selected
For those of you curious, the top ten players were selected by a staff vote. Each staff member ranked the top 10 players, with a number one vote counting as 10 points, a number two vote counting for nine points, and so on. A full list of the rankings, including those who received votes but were not included in the top 10, will be published with the reveal of Penn State’s top player on Friday, Sept. 4.
Rankings To Date
And Don't Forget...
If you haven't already, get your copy of We Are! 2015, the premier preseason preview of everything Penn State Football: