Amani Oruwariye is expected to start for the first time in 2018, but he’s still going to have to work hard to have as great of a season as he did last year. As a redshirt junior in 2017, he led the Nittany Lions with four interceptions and was a major player in the secondary despite being behind both Grant Haley and Christian Campbell on the depth chart.
Especially impressive was Oruwariye’s performance in the Michigan State loss, in which he recorded a career-high five pass breakups while snagging a key interception in the fourth quarter. The grad student might not be targeted so often if Brent Pry and James Franklin make him a fixture on the edge, but he’ll still have opportunities to make plays as long as the revamped front seven gets some stops on the ground.
Oruwariye is already on the Big Ten radar with a second team All-Big Ten mention in 2017, so it will be interesting to see how well he plays in a full-time role. Ideally, he’ll be the cornerstone of the new-look secondary and move up to first team all-conference. If that happens, there’s a good bet that the Lions will be playing for the league title in December.
Only 21 days until Penn State beats Appalachian State!