Aside from that though Blake Gillikin boomed off a 56-yard punt after not punting during the first half and DeAndre Thompkins gave Penn State its first punt return touchdown since 2008 and looked close to breaking at least one more. "Which equates to probably the most complete game since we've been here".
But there was also his second touchdown of the game - a 30-yard run late in the second quarter where he continued to mow people down.
That was in response to a question about his 80-yard run that would have been a touchdown if he had not been ruled out at the 7-yard line.
"We want to play as many guys as we possibly can".
Although it rained heavily early in the game, a soggy field and leaky Akron defense couldn't slow Barkley and McSorley, who combined for 371 total yards and four scores in the first half to put the game out of reach.
Penn State football is back, yay!
"You don't let (this result) define you, you learn from it", Akron coach Terry Bowden said.
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"I thought he was gone". The senior was 12 of 23 for 71 yards with an interception and was sacked twice. Penn State K Tyler Davis, who was 22 of 24 on field goal attempts last season, missed a 39-yard attempt in the first half but rebounded with a career-best 47-yarder in the third quarter.
Thompkins returned punts in 2015 but had some control issues and was replaced by John Reid last season.
Saquon Barkley led a Penn State rushing attack that totaled 247 yards with 172 markers and two touchdowns on 14 carries, and he totaled 246 all-purpose yards with the addition of 54 receiving yards and 20 kickoff return yards. "I knew I had a good chance and I trusted my guys a lot". Williams saw it live, too, as he's the sideline reporter for the Penn State radio network.
Replacing both starting defensive ends is no joke, but Ryan Buchholz, Torrence Brown and Shareef Miller stepped in an did a nice job in their first game with increased playing time. He headed for the locker room just before halftime and did not return to play.
The Zips should be better offensively this season. Barkley gained yards at will against an Akron defense that had no answer for his speed and quickness. But as good as Barkley is, having Gesicki in place to burn defenses who stack the box is part of the reason the Penn State offense is just so hard to stop.
The Nittany Lions open the season ranked sixth and are laying a ton of points here against an Akron team that gave up nearly 34 points per game last season.
Franklin talked about how much Thompkins' physical nature has grown in the past few years as he bulked up from the 175 pounds he came to Penn State at.