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July 22, 2013This story appears in our upcoming preseason edition of Blue White Illustrated magazine.
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By Nate Bauer
Blue White Illustrated
Penn State wide receiver Allen Robinson knows defensive talent.
The leading receiver for the Nittany Lions a season ago, shattering school records en route to an All-Big Ten selection, Robinson has faced some of the best defensive competition the conference offers.
The catch, of course, is that the very best might just be on his own team.
Lining up against junior defensive back Adrian Amos throughout the spring and into summer workouts, Robinson said that the pair continue working together toward making each other better.
"I think we do it more over the summer because we have more time to do it," Robinson said. "We've done it quite a bit this summer now, just trying to continue to get each other better.
"I think with all the work that he has put in, I definitely think that he is due for a big year. I mean, he's one of the hardest workers on the team and he's a great film studier. In my opinion, he's definitely one of the better corners in the country and I think that will be on display this season."
Penn State fans already know as much.
Coming off a sophomore season in which he picked off two passes, had 2.5 tackles for loss, three pass breakups, five defended and assisted on a sack, Amos was given honorable mention status for the All-Big Ten teams of both the media and conference coaches.
With the accolades, the expectations are even higher for the season ahead.
Having moved from his starting corner spot over to safety early in spring practice, Amos appears as a starter at safety alongside fifth-year senior Malcolm Willis in the team's June 13 official depth chart. Realistically, Amos is likely to line up at a variety of positions in the defensive secondary based on opponent and matchup.
Equally as essential as his play, leadership from the often soft-spoken Amos is a necessity for a program sorely lacking in established veterans.
"Every kid is different and certain kids' leadership characteristics surface sooner than others," defensive coordinator John Butler said. "Obviously, the ideal situation in any organization is some of your most talented and most productive performers to be the ones leading the way, because those are the ones that usually the followers will listen to."
Unassuming in public, Amos gradually appears to be emerging from his shell within the confines of the program, at least according to friends and teammates who have watched him intently this summer.
Taking the responsibility of guiding his inexperienced teammates quite seriously, Amos said his intent is to continue his own personal development while bringing along younger players.
"Everybody has expectations to hold each other accountable," Amos said. "It's not about yelling at a teammate. It's about helping a teammate when they may be a little confused or might need a little pickup."
"I'm going to do my best because I want to be great in the country. I'm holding myself accountable to my own expectations of myself."
Welcome to Blue White Illustrated's annual preseason football issue!
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Now, let's take a look at what's in our special preseason issue!
2013 Football Preview
Bill O'Brien Q&A - BWI editor Nate Bauer caught up with Penn State head coach Bill O'Brien this month for an exclusive one-on-one interview to get a grasp on the NIttany Lions as they enter his second preseason camp at the helm. How is he feeling as Season Two quickly approaches? Find out, here!
Phil's Corner - Blue White Illustrated publisher Phil Grosz is back for yet another year as the helm. This year, he explains why Penn State has the talent to maintain its momentum during the 2013 season. Don't miss his expert analysis leading into the season, here!
Lights, Camera, Action! - The sanctions have undoubtedly hurt Penn State, but with Bill O'Brien at the helm, the Nittany Lions remain one of college football's greatest draws, Blue White Illustrated editor Matt Herb writes.
Game Changer - His commitment helped the Nittany Lions regain their recruiting mojo during a time of upheaval. Now, Christian Hackenberg looks to make an even bigger impact on the field, BWI special contributor Ryan Jones writes.
Wait's Over - BWI editor Matt Herb focuses on the unknown firepower in Penn State's arsenal leading into the 2013 season, redshirt freshman wide receiver Eugene Lewis. Can he lend a hand this fall in Penn State's new high-powered offense?
Hold on tight - Penn State's tight end explosion during the 2012 season was just one of many highlights for the Nittany Lions' offense. With every contributor back for this season, BWI contributor Eric Thomas checks in on the expectations moving forward.
Rise and Shine - Motivated to win the starting defensive end position opposite Deion Barnes, redshirt junior C.J. Olaniyan is ready for his opportunity to excel, BWI's Tim Owen writes.
The Road Back - Injuries slowed linebacker Ben Kline last fall, but as Owen writes here, he's expected to be a key contributor - if not a starter - in the Nittany Lions linebacking corps this season.
Boom Times - Rounding out our position-by-position look at the Nittany Lions heading into the 2013 season, BWI editor Matt Herb catches up with senior punter Alex Butterworth as he embarks on what he hopes will be his best season yet.
BWI 2013 Big Ten Preview
From a game-by-game breakdown to special contributor Lou Prato's look at the Nittany Lions' first foray in the conference, we've got the Big Ten covered.
Class of 2014 continues to expand
Blue White Illustrated recruiting analyst Ryan Snyder has the latest on the verbal commitments of quarterback Michael O'Connor, defensive back Troy Vincent, and defensive tackle Antoine White, pushing the class of 2012 to 13 members. He also takes a look at what's left on the Nittany Lions' recruiting board.
These are just some of the stories featured in this special Blue White Illustrated 2013 Preseason Penn State Football Issue.
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