Following a second consecutive 11-win season and a Fiesta Bowl victory, Penn State begins life without star running back Saquon Barkley and a number of other veterans in 2018. And on Saturday, during the annual Blue-White spring game at Beaver Stadium on Saturday afternoon, fans will get an early glimpse at James Franklin’s revamped roster.
The game is scheduled to start at about 3 p.m. ET and will be broadcast nationally on Big Ten Network. If you don’t have cable or can’t get to a TV, you can still watch the game live on your computer, phone or streaming device by signing up for one of the following cable-free, live-TV streaming services:
Hulu With Live TV: In addition to a Netflix-like on-demand streaming library, Hulu now also offers a bundle of live TV channels, including Big Ten Network. You can sign up for “Hulu with Live TV” right here, and you can then watch a live stream of the game on your computer via the Hulu website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the Hulu app.
FuboTV: Big Ten Network is included in the “Fubo Premier” channel package. You can sign up for a free 7-day trial, and you can then watch the game on your computer via the FuboTV website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the FuboTV app.
DirecTV Now: There are four main channel packages, and Big Ten Network is included in the “Just Right”, “Go Big” and “Gotta Have It” bundles. You can sign up for a free 7-day trial no matter what package you choose, and you can then watch the game live on your computer via the DirecTV Now website, or on your phone, tablet or streaming device via the DirecTV Now app.
Potential top-five pick Saquon Barkley is the most noticeable loss from last year’s team, but the Nittany Lions will have far more holes to fill on defense, where safeties Marcus Allen and Troy Apke, corners Christian Campbell and Grant Haley, middle linebacker Jason Cabinda and defensive tackles Parker Cothren and Curtis Cothran are all gone, with many likely to hear their name called during the NFL draft next weekend.
That’s a lot of talent to replace, and how exactly the defense lines up and rotates will be one of the main things to watch at Beaver Stadium on Saturday.
Among the projected replacements figures to be five-star linebacker signee Micah Parsons, who has received early praise from former Penn State legend LaVar Arrington.
“He is to me–and I want to be careful in saying this–he is almost like the closest thing to me coming out of high school,” Arrington said. “What shocked and blew me away is he is the same size as me. I am one of the bigger linebackers. And what makes it more interesting, he can move. Guys who can do what I was able to do and move the way I moved and play the way I played at my size–it’s a real rarity. You got a better chance of seeing a unicorn.”
Another player who has been impressive this spring has been redshirt freshman K.J. Hamler. The speedy wide receiver missed his senior season of high school after tearing his ACL and then redshirted last year, and while DeAndre Thompkins is expected to take over in the slot this year, Hamler is proving he belongs on the field in some capacity.
“K.J., he’s probably the buzz of the camp right now with the players and the coaches,” Franklin said. “He’s just so quick and fast. Usually you get a guy that’s really fast or a guy that’s really quick. He’s both.”
Saturday will mark his first “real” game action in a little less than two years, so it’ll be interesting to see if he can continue on the success he’s had in practice.
Of course, Parsons and Hamler are just two of many players to watch on Saturday afternoon, as the Nittany Lions look to create some optimism heading into the summer.
Source: Heavy Sports