Right now, states across the country have issued stay-at-home orders while we deal with COVID-19. In Pennsylvania, schools have closed through the end of the 2019-2020 school year. This includes Penn State, and with no students allowed on campus, that means no spring football.
This spring was set to be an important one for the team, on both sides of the ball. The defense was set to replace a large portion of its starters, but for the most part the defense is remaining the same, with Brent Pry at the helm. The bigger task was at hand for the offense, which was going to install Kirk Ciarrocca’s offense.
MMQB asks: how will the offense be affected by no spring football?
At this point in time, we’ll labor on under the idea that football will be held in the fall, shortened/adjusted season or otherwise. With that in mind, what sort of issues will the offense have?
At the moment, word is going around that Rock is teaching his system to the offense using Zoom meetings. Of course, a portion of any offensive system is sitting down in a classroom and discussing the setup on a whiteboard, answer questions from the players, and going over some of the various nuances. But a big part of it is getting out on the practice field and actually practicing the new plays and schemes.
If the season starts in the fall, the team won’t get the chance to practice with each other on the field until the beginning of August. Trying to work out the kinks in just a few weeks seems sub-optimal to me.
Furthermore, there is also a new offensive line coach in town. Phil Trautwein has been lauded for his OL setups, but can he get the linemen to learn his techniques, while also teaching them the fundamentals of the Ciarrocca offense?
Overall, the offense is loaded with talent, but had an up-and-down 2019 - Kirk Ciarrocca was going to take the offense to the next level in 2020, but can that happen with just a limited amount of time to learn and practice everything? Time will tell, but I’m a little worried, assuming the season starts on time.