Penn State Football Must Check 3 Massive Boxes in 2024 Season

NittanyCentral is home for the latest Penn State Football, Penn State Wrestling, Penn State Basketball news, updates, and analysis of the Penn State Nittany Lions

NittanyCentral is home for the latest Penn State Football, Penn State Wrestling, Penn State Basketball news, updates, and analysis of the Penn State Nittany Lions

NittanyCentral is home for the latest Penn State Football, Penn State Wrestling, Penn State Basketball news, updates, and analysis of the Penn State Nittany Lions

The latest news, insight, and analysis of Penn State Football, Penn State Wrestling, and Penn State Basketball, including schedules, game results, analysis of breaking news, rumors, speculation, and recruiting coverage of future Penn State Nittany Lions

NittanyCentral is home to the latest Penn State Nittany Lions news, updates, insight, and analysis, including in-depth coverage of Penn State Football, Penn State Wrestling, Penn State Basketball, and much more

Penn State Football: 3 Massive Boxes James Franklin’s Team Must Check in 2024

Penn State Football, who went 10-2 last season and boasted one of the best defenses in the country, are now under new leadership.

James Franklin, Penn State Football
Penn State Nittany Lions head coach James Franklin (Matthew O’Haren-USA TODAY Sports)

With the recent changes in their coaching staff, Penn State is gearing up to make a strong push for the College Football Playoff. The Playoffs, now expanded to 12 teams, offer a more accessible path than the previous four-team format.

If the Nittany Lions are going to take the next step, head coach James Franklin’s team needs to make major strides in three key areas during the 2024 College Football Season.

3 Boxes Penn State Football Must Check This Season

More Explosive Plays

Last season, Penn State’s offense was physical with a solid rushing attack but needed to improve in the explosive play category.

This past season, the Nittany Lions struggled at getting the ball down the field. Quarterback Drew Allar only averaged 6.7 yards per pass.

Andy Kotelnicki, Kansas’s offensive coordinator last season, has been hired as the new offensive coordinator. This past season, Kansas had over 65 plays of 20-plus yards and 39 plays over 30 yards, while Penn State only had 40 plays over 20 yards and 19 over 30. The Jayhawks averaged 7.01 yards per play.

Under Kotelnicki, expect the Nittany Lions offense to be more explosive.


Penn State’s Wide Receivers Must Do More

Julian Fleming, Penn State Football
Penn State Nittany Lions wide receiver Julian Fleming (Mandatory Credit: Matthew O’Haren-USA TODAY Sports)

Last year, the Nittany Lions receivers struggled to get open.

Penn State’s leading receiver, KeAndre Lambert-Smith, is now going to Auburn, but Penn State added Julian Fleming, a transfer from Ohio State.

Harrison Wallace returns and will need to stay healthy so he can develop.

No receiver on the Nittany Lions roster has more than 19 catches. They will see a lot of man-to-man coverage and need to create separation for the Nittany Lions to be victorious. Allar has to have the willingness to push the ball down the field.

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Make The Playoff

With it now a 12-team playoff, Penn State must get in. If it were a 12-team playoff, they would have qualified eight times in the past eight seasons.

But, James Franklin and Penn State must prove they can beat Michigan or Ohio State. With the Wolverines not on this year’s schedule, this is their big chance to prove that they can play with the big dogs.

MORE: Way-Too-Early Game-By-Game Predictions For 2024 Nittany Lions

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