Over the last two weeks, we’ve covered our candidates of breakout players in 2019. While we covered all the players we believe have the best chances of having breakout seasons, there are some players who deserve consideration.
Below, you’ll find seven more Nittany Lions who could also be in for big things this fall:
TE Nick Bowers:
Entering the season fully healthy, Bowers is looking at the possibility of playing in his first full season for the Nittany Lions. Bowers is primed to be the backup tight end to potential All-American candidate Pat Friermuth. However, the Nittany Lions offense this should be playing more 21-man personnel, allowing the Lions to use two tight ends. At times Bowers will be the second tight end and at other times it will be Zach Kuntz. With Friermuth being the primary focus when it comes to tight ends, it could open a lot of seams for Bowers potentially this upcoming season.
S Jaquan Brisker:
The JUCO transfer is expected to make an instant impact his upcoming season for the Nittany Lions. Most expect the former Lackawanna C.C standout to be a potential day one starter for the Nittany Lions as well. Brisker has the tools and skill set to be a high impact player, which means this may just come down to how much playing time he gets in 2019.
LB Ellis Brooks:
Brooks has been around the program for what feels like forever, but 2019 may be the season he breaks out. Brooks has seen his role increase each of the last two seasons and in 2019 that role show increase even more. The middle linebacker was a solid backup for Jan Johnson a season ago and in 2019 he should see even more playing time and could even battle for the starting role. The Nittany Lions have restored the talent at linebacker so he’ll have to be careful about not missing a step.
RB Noah Cain:
While Devyn Ford was the higher-rated running back in the 2019 recruiting class, I believe it will be Noah Cain who has the bigger impact. Cain showed this spring he has all the tools to be a special talent. With the potential to take the backup running back spot, Cain could make a huge impact in 2019. A bigger back than probable starter Ricky Slade, Cain could make a phenomenal change of pace, short yardage back for the Nittany Lions in 2019. I’d also expect him to get a considerable amount of looks on the goal line.
TE Zack Kuntz:
Another tight end that could be ready for a breakout season is Camp Hill (PA) native Zack Kuntz. The 6-foot-7 tight end is primed to be a difference maker once he hits the field for the Nittany Lions. With his height, Kuntz should get a great deal of chances in 2019 when the offense gets closer to the red zone. He may not put up a ton of yards or receptions but he could put up four or five touchdowns this season.
DE Jayson Oweh:
On a personal level, this is a player that I can’t wait to see develop. Oweh by all measures is a freak athlete and all you need to know is that he runs a 40-yard dash under 4.50. Oweh didn’t make a huge impact as a true freshman but did record two sacks. In 2019, he’ll be a bigger piece of the defensive lines rotation and he’ll also have another year of experience after being a new comer to football the last few years. If Oweh can put together the technical side of the game, the sky is the limit.
OT Rasheed Walker:
In recent memory, there hasn’t been many offensive line recruits for the Nittany Lions as highly touted as Walker. Walker in 2018 saw playing time in four games for the Nittany Lions despite running into some trouble off the field. Known for being a highly intense player with a mean side, Walker could be the game changing offensive lineman the Nittany Lions have been looking for in the James Franklin era. Walker has a great chance in this year’s fall camp to make a push for a starting job. So before discussing any chances of a breakout season, the offensive line competitions will need to work themselves out.