Penn State QB Drew Allar on His Biggest Weakness – “I Almost Process Information Way Too Fast”

    Drew Allar's first season has many excited for Penn State's future, and how he responded to what his biggest weakness was should only further that excitement.

    As a first-year starter, Penn State QB Drew Allar led the Nittany Lions to a 10-3 record and a Peach Bowl appearance. Still, frustrations are growing among some sects of the fanbase, as James Franklin’s squad has defeated rival Ohio State just once in his 10-year tenure.

    The pressure is mounting in 2024, but Allar is saying all the right things as he gears up for his second season at the helm of the offense.

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    Drew Allar Reflects on 2023 Season and Room for Improvement

    Allar stepped foot on campus as a five-star prospect and the No. 4 QB in the 2022 recruiting class. As a true freshman, he flashed his potential in limited reps behind longtime starter Sean Clifford, throwing for 344 yards, four touchdowns, and zero interceptions.

    With Clifford off to the NFL, the Allar hype train was rolling through State College, and he didn’t disappoint. He tossed 25 TDs to just two INTs, and although his completion rate looks rough on paper (59.9%), 52 of his 158 incompletions were throwaways or dropped passes.

    Allar got the ball out quickly, rarely took sacks, and generally kept the offense humming, with their only losses coming against Ohio State, Michigan, and Ole Miss in the Peach Bowl.

    But Allar knows 10-3 won’t cut it, and he got introspective about his play when speaking with Blue White Illustrated.

    “One of my biggest strengths was also my weakness,” he explained. “I almost process information way too fast in a way where I’d be early in progressions and not let the first part of the progression really develop that much … I got to let it develop first and then move into the backside of the progression just because with the pass game everything is tied in and rhythmic. So when your first read is not open, that’s when your second read is coming open.”

    Processing too fast is not typically an issue for collegiate QBs.

    In fact, most have issues with being too slow when diagnosing progressions and opposing defenses. Nevertheless, Allar and his coaches rewatched the film, noted areas for improvement, and have begun preparations for the upcoming season. Outside of slowing down his reads, Allar said “being as consistent as possible” is his priority this offseason.

    And as the Nittany Lion put it: “Something that will never be in doubt about me is my work ethic and my work habits.” So, expect marked development from the QB in 2024.

    When asked about the pressure levels at Penn State, Allar told, “I try my very best to just focus on whatever I can do to help this team win get and better — self-improvement as well as help the team meet the goals that we want to get to. … The reason I play football is to go out and win … I have no worries about any outsiders saying like, I suck. I mean, I’ve heard it enough, so it doesn’t really bother me that much.”

    But that doesn’t mean there weren’t low points last season. Allar explained how his internal demand would get out of hand, crediting conversations with WRs coach Marques Hagans for helping him get right mentally.

    “It was more internal, almost putting way too much pressure on myself,” he said. “I’d be overly critical of myself, and I felt like I didn’t like to just trust myself. I got to this position for a reason. So I’ve just got to continue to build on those things that got me here and trust my instincts and trust the way I can play quarterback because Coach Franklin brought me here for a reason.”

    It’s also important to put into perspective just how young Allar is age-wise (turns 20 on March 8) and QB-wise.

    “This is my sixth or seventh year playing QB full-time,” the Penn State passer stated. “Most QBs are bred from the day that they start putting on the pads. … That just wasn’t me. … I haven’t really been immersed in the full QB life yet for that long. So it just takes time, and I think I learned a lot from last year, and I’m doing a lot more this offseason so far, which is going to help me hopefully going into spring ball and fall camp.”

    KEEP READING: 2024 Big Ten Transfer Portal Rankings

    The 2024 season will be crucial for Franklin, Allar, and the entire Penn State program. But the third-year QB is built to carry the weight of the offense on his shoulders. And if he continues his linear progression, Nittany Lions fans will be in for a treat — as will NFL franchises.

    Miss any action from the top college QB Rankings during the 2023 football season? Want to track all the movement with the college football transfer portal? College Football Network has you covered with that and more!


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