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Penn State Football

Mike Yurcich Impressed By Young Freshmen in Camp

Photo by Penn State Athletics: Mike Yurcich

Mike Yurcich is heading into his second year as the offensive coordinator at Penn State. He had an up and down year one in Happy Valley partly due to the injury to Sean Clifford, as well as injuries across the offensive line during the second half of the season.

There is reason for optimism heading into year two of Yurcich’s system. Since 2013, when he became the offensive coordinator and quarterback coach at Oklahoma State his offense has averaged 6.36 yards per play which is the highest among all offensive coordinators. His teams have scored 40 or more points 52 times and 50 or more points 26 times, both totals are also tops among offensive coordinators.

At Penn State’s Media Day he was asked about the progression of freshman quarterbacks Drew Allar and Beau Pribula, and he was impressed by the progression from the spring.

“They have grown leaps and bounds,” Yurcich said. “Just very important that they got in early, there were a lot of growing pains the beginning there were silly mistakes, now if there is an error you can understand the why behind it. Maybe it would be a more sophisticated of a look that fooled them on the defensive identification standpoint or progression standpoint, but they have done a really good job improving.”

Yurcich was asked on how they are going to fill the shoes of Jahan Dotson and the feels that Parker Washington is up for the task. Of being a number one receiver.

“Parker, we know what he’s got because he a good year last year. He has an uncanny ability to get open whether it be man separating with technique and his athleticism, or zone understanding zones and coverages. He is a veteran guy were going to lean on heavily this year.”

Yurcich also spoke about as a play caller the things he can do to help out the offensive line play that is a question on the team heading into 2022.

“There’s obviously thing that offensive coordinators can do to play to your personnel’s strengths, and it maybe sometimes what the defense present and what their strength is. So maybe it’s double teaming their best lineman or a look back and a check with me at the line of scrimmage to get away from the leverage of the defense.”

He spoke about the running backs, specifically Nicholas Singleton and he is impressed on what he has done in camp, but he still wants him to keep improving.

“Nick’s done a great job, he is a very gifted runner, and we are or sharing a lot of reps right now and it has been fun watching all the backs and think we have a really good backfield. He is a special talent, but he needs to progress in protections and the fundamentals of tailback play whether its inside zone, outside zone or a gap zone which is instinctively fooling rules and securing the football.” Yurcich said. “Those are all things that (running backs) Coach Seider will teach extremely well internally and were going to see growth with him.”

He also spoke about the Impact of Western Kentucky transfer Mitchell Tinsley.

“Mitchell is a guy that is well seasoned.” Yurcich said. “He transitions very well. He can get out of his cuts really well. He is a skilled guy that understands coverages, route conversions. New install is going to be relatively easy for him to absorb, so his is a very intelligent football player and he is very physical at the same point. He is a little ahead of the curve because of where he came from and the Amount of football that he has played.”

Twitter: @bwalkerdadon

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