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How many Penn State players made the Phil Steele All-American teams?

Greg Pickelby:Greg Pickel06/11/24

GregPickel

Penn State is represented on both sides of the ball across longtime college football magazine publisher Phil Steele’s four preseason All-American teams. Guard Sal Wormley is a fourth-team member, while Abdul Carter is a second-team member at defensive end.

Wormley enters his sixth and final season with the Nittany Lions. He is a bit of a surprising addition to this list considering his solid but not spectacular play. Yet, it may just be a projection of what lies ahead for the Delaware native who was an All-Big Ten honorable mention pick in 2023. He started all 13 games at right guard in 2022 and 2023 after missing all of the 2021 season due to injury. Wormley played in just three games in 2020 and was the program’s Developmental Squad Offensive Player of the Year in 2021.

“Just being more physical in all aspects,” Wormley told BWI earlier this year when asked about how he can improve this offseason. “Really just want to put that on tape showing me fishing guys driving guys out the way out the hole. Just being more physical as a whole. I think got another level that I can get to.

“[Offensive line coach Phil Trautwein] harps on it every day. I can have a good rep- [he says] ‘Drive him farther, you can drive him farther, I know you can.’ So he harps on it every day, and I’m taking his coaching.”

More: What are the top three questions facing the Penn State offensive line entering the summer?

As for Carter, he receives the preseason All-American nod despite playing a new position for the first time. It was the All-Big Ten linebacker’s decison to move up to the trenches. Head coach James Franklin is happy with how the transition went during spring practice. And, the Phildelphia native is, too.

“As you guys all know, Abdul is very, very talented,” Franklin said. “The transition has probably gone better and faster than I thought it would. It’s a different world up there [at defensive end]. It sounds good, but it’s a major difference. And he’s really transitioned very, very well. He’s been physical. He’s been explosive off of the edge. There are still some things he’s learning, but his transition has probably gone better and faster than anticipated.”

Added Carter:

“It was something I thought about. I just had to sit down and talk to the people that I trust the most, have a real deep conversation, and make sure we were making the best decision possible. It was the right decision.”

Why?

“I love challenges,” Carter said. “I love trying new things and taking on new things, and that’s something I’m doing right now, going through a big change within my position. It’s going good for me now. I want to play fast and play physical and do what I do best.”

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