Image from ESPN.com
Update: Saquon helped torch the Michigan Defense on Saturday Oct. 21. He rushed for 108 yards and 2 TDs on 15 carries. He also had 3 receptions for 53 yards and 1 TD. He could have done more damage, but his team didn’t need more. Keep the Saquon Heisman talks rolling. This kid is legit.
If you follow College Football, you know the name Saquon Barkley. He is the most talked about player today. He is a special kid. Here is a profile on Saquon Barkley.
High School: Barkley attended Whitehall Public High School located in Pennsylvania. Whitehall, PA is in the Lehigh Valley region located relatively close to New Jersey and New York. It is a town that still has much leftover infrastructure from the heavy manufacturing of the early and mid 20th century. The town is a suburb of Allentown, PA. The demographics of the area are over 90% white and less than 3% African-American, according to the 2010 census.
While at Whitehall, Barkley was a big man on campus. His senior year in 2014-5 he rushed for 1851 yards on 216 carries and 24 TDs. He was rated a 4-star recruit and committed to Rutgers initially. He de-committed and then committed to play at The Pennsylvania State University for the Nittany Lions.
He also played basketball, where he helped lead his team to the Pennsylvania state playoffs his senior year, something he was unable to do in football. Here are his own words on his bball game:”I’ll be honest, I’m not a great, all-around basketball player but I try to hustle and bring energy to the team, rebounding is probably the best thing I do.” A true athlete that just loved to play and compete even if his skills didn’t stand out. Gotta love his attitude and realism.
College: Barkley then enrolled at Penn State. His first year of football was in the 2015 season. Personally, he killed it. He rushed for 1,076 yards and quickly established himself as a dominant player as a true-freshman. He was named Big Ten Freshman of the year and second-team All-Big Ten. However, the team finished with a 7-6 record.
His sophomore season was even better personally and for the team. Barkley rushed for 1,496 yards and had 402 receiving yards. The team made the Rose Bowl and was among the best teams in the country. He won the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year Award and was a finalist for the Maxwell Award given to the best all-around college football player according to the sportswriters.
This season: Barkley is now a junior. He is the hottest name in College Football. Turn in ESPN and you will see segments dedicated to whether he will win the Heisman. His name and highlights are everywhere. Through 5 games, he already has amassed 584 rushing yards and 386 receiving yards, as well as 98 yard kickoff return. He averages close to 220 all-purpose yards per game. Penn State is 5-0 now ranked 2nd in all of College Football.
This week the #2 Nittany Lions face off against the #18 Michigan Wolverines at 7:30pm down in Happy Valley (Penn State home game). Tickets are hard to come by and the game will be a white-out with over 100,000 people in attendance.
Tune in to watch the Heisman favorite do his thing. The Michigan defense has yet to give up over 100 yards to a single rusher this season. Something has to give. Should be a great one.