Penn State football has a legitimate star at tight end
Entering the 2018 season, Penn State football had a glaring hole at the tight end position with the departure of Mike Gesicki to the NFL. There was a lot of unproven talent on the depth chart, but one player rose to stood out among the group. True freshman Pat Freiermuth turned into not only the best tight end, but one of Penn State’s best weapons on offense.
Freiermuth finished the regular season third on the team with 24 receptions for 330 yards. He led all Nittany Lions with seven touchdown catches and was sixth in the Big Ten in touchdown receptions.
The season started a bit slow for Freiermuth, as the coaching staff wasn’t exactly sure which young tight end would fill the vacant starter role. He didn’t record a catch in the season opener against Appalachian State and caught just one pass for five yards in Week 2 versus Pitt. While the catch against the Panthers didn’t seem like much at the time, it actually started a stretch of 11 straight games with at least one reception for Freiermuth.
Against Illinois, Freiermuth caught a five-yard touchdown — his first at the collegiate level. That game seemed to get him going, as he followed that up with three receptions for 44 yards and a touchdown against Ohio State. Starting with that game, he had just one contest the rest of the way in which he failed to record at least 20 yards receiving.
Freiermuth finished the season with three scores in the final two games and will carry a lot of momentum into the Citrus Bowl.
A four-star recruit out Brooks School in Massachusetts, Freiermuth has already blossomed into a legitimate star for the Nittany Lions and should have the tight end position on lockdown in Happy Valley for the next few seasons.