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Penn State Football All 105

Penn State All 105: New Season, New Position for Lamont Payne

Photo by Penn State Athletics: Lamont Payne

Part of an offseason at Penn State and every other college football program is players changing positions, and Lamont Payne was one of those who did that for PSU.

Abdul Carter moved from LB to DE.

Tyrece Mills moved from safety to linebacker.

Although Payne’s move from cornerback to safety isn’t as drastic as those two, it’s still a change, and it makes sense. After all, when Payne signed with Penn State in December 2022, he was initially slated to be a safety. After starting his college football journey at corner, Payne is making a move, and he’s the latest subject of All 105, a Nittany Sports Now series profiling each Penn State football player.

Height: 6-foot

Weight: 185 pounds 

Hometown: Carnegie, Pennsylvania 

Before Penn State: Payne came to Penn State as a three-star from Chartiers Valley High School in the Pittsburgh area. Payne is a lengthy DB and has a similar skillset to former PSU CB Joey Porter Jr., who they also plucked from Western Pennsylvania. Payne had been a heavy Penn State lean since receiving the offer, but also held offers from Pitt, West Virginia, Virginia Tech, Rutgers and Syracuse. He committed to Penn State during the team’s White Out game against Auburn in September 2021.

Last year: Payne redshirted his first season, appearing in three games. The coaches named him developmental squad player of the week twice.

Where he stands: Payne’s most likely position is free safety. On Penn State’s unofficial depth chart, fourth-year player Zakee Wheatley is Penn State’s projected starter at that position, and Payne is competing with true freshman Vaboue Toure for the first backup role.

A quote by Payne: “I feel at first, I took it as a negative, and I was obviously upset about it. But then after doing some self-reflection, it kind of made me very appreciative of being on D-Squad and going through what I went through because I feel like it kind of molded me into the player I am now going into my second year.” — Payne on working with Penn State’s developmental squad as a true freshman at PSU’s second-year player media availability in February, via Daniel Gallen of Lions247.

A quote about Payne: ”He’s a dog. He’s doing the tire pulls. Everything we’re doing, he’s competing like no other, and even our coaches, everybody can see the dog in him. That translates to the field. … Sometimes people think winter workouts have nothing to do [with it], but it has everything to do with football. We’re seeing that already about him. He has a feistiness, and that’s gonna translate to the field. I can’t wait to see it happen.” — Safety K.J. Winston on Payne this past February via Daniel Gallen of Lions247.

More All 105s

RB Quinton Martin 

RB Corey Smith

LB Ta’Mere Robinson 

CB Antoine Belgrave-Shorter

S Vaboue Toure

DE Mylachi Williams 

QB Jack Lambert

WR Josiah Brown

DE Jameial Lyons

TE Joey Schlaffer

QB Ethan Grunkemeyer

CB Elliot Washington

TE Khalil Dinkins

DE Amin Vanover 

LB Tyrece Mills

QB Jaxon Smolik

S DaKarri Nelson

LB Tony Rojas

RB Kaytron Allen

CB Jon Mitchell

WR Anthony Ivey

DE Abdul Carter

RB Nicholas Singleton

QB Beau Pribula 

WR Tyler Johnson

CB Zion Tracy

WR Kaden Saunders

WR Trey Wallace 

S Zakee Wheatley

CB Cam Miller

WR Omari Evans

CB A.J. Harris

CB Jalen Kimber

WR Julian Fleming 

S KJ Winston

WR Liam Clifford

S Jaylen Reed 

LB Dom DeLuca

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