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Franklin singles out some players enjoying good spring

Photo by Penn State Athletics: Rasheed Walker

James Franklin met with the media after practice Wednesday evening and addressed numerous topics, including naming some players who have stood out so far in spring practice.

Franklin ran through a number of players and noted that it’s a bit easier to be focused on some of the newer players who joined Penn State from the transfer portal.

**DE Arnold Ebiketie (transfer from Temple): “We call him AK. He kind of stood out in winter workouts. You’re, probably biased a little bit because it’s a fresh set of eyes. So the guys that you don’t know as well, they probably stand out a little bit more.

**CB Johnny Dixon (transfer from South Carolina): “I would say Johnny Dixon has stood out on the football field. He had to kind of figure out the winter workouts and kind of work through that part of it. But he has stood out on the football field. And again, the new guys just seem to jump out at you a little bit more because you’re evaluating them with a fresh set of eyes.”

**CB Kalen King (early enrollee freshman): “I would say that Kalen King is another guy like that, that falls into that category.”

**OL Rasheed Walker: “I think Rasheed Walker is practicing the way he needs to practice to be the type of player that he wants to be. I’ve seen a real change in him.”

**OL Mike Miranda: “Mike Miranda is a guy that just continues to steadily get better.”

**Tight ends: “Our tight end unit as a group is strong.”

**Running backs: “Our running back group as a unit is strong.”

**QB Sean Clifford: Seaon’s on a mission. After two years ago having a really good year as a first-time starter and then as a program us having challenges last year, I’ve seen a lot of growth from him.”

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**S Jaquan Brisker: “Brisker came back for a reason. He’s jumped out to me.”

**DT PJ Mustipher: “PJ Mustipher is really, he’s kind of the lead by example guy in everything that he does. I’m super proud of PJ. He just continues to attack it the way you want. I’ve been impressed with him.”

**CB Tariq Castro-Fields: “Castro-Fields, you can make the same argument about him.”

Summarizing, Franklin said this:

“It’s probably the group of young guys that you’re evaluating for the first time that stand out to you, and there are those seniors that came back for a reason and they’re kind of on a mission. They’re probably the guys that stand out to you the most.”

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Cory Giger is a 15-year veteran of the Penn State beat and a journalist with 28 years of experience. He has won more than 100 state and national journalism awards during his career, plus he's a voter for the Heisman Trophy in football and Wooden Award in basketball.

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