October 6, 2012 at 6:28 PM
As Penn State drove into Northwestern territory, Zach Zwinak made his way to the sideline and asked for a breather.
And why shouldn’t he? The running back’s name had been called on six-straight plays in the second quarter, helping the offense gain 40 yards.
“I think we ran a hundred and something plays, so he has every right to be gassed,” fullback Michael Zordich said.
“He works hard on the field and he gives it his all, so there’s nothing wrong with needing a little break.”
Zwinak didn’t spend much time on the sideline throughout the victory against Northwestern, however, as he had 34 touches totaling 173 yards from scrimmage. Despite Bill Belton being back to full-strength, Zwinak took 28 of the team’s 39 carries on the day.
Coach Bill O’Brien said the redshirt sophomore allowed the offense to run as efficiently as possible against Northwestern.
“Zach, we felt like was running the ball downhill,” O’Brien said. “And [we] just felt his physical presence in this type of a game was something that we wanted to go with.”
After having his first 100-yard game last weekend, Zwinak eclipsed last week’s performance, gaining 121 rushing yards. The running back, who averaged 4.3 yards per carry, said he has been able to continue his success because he has stayed true to his strengths.
“I know I’m not going to be able to make guys miss that much or dance,” Zwinak said. “So I’m just going to try to get behind my pads and push them.”