UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. (WTAJ) — As Sean Clifford enters his sixth season under center for the Nittany Lions, an experienced backup is invaluable. The backup will most likely be redshirt freshman Christian Veilleux, whose meaningful minutes came in the Penn State “Flu Game” against Rutgers.
“I never want to wish any sickness or injuries on anybody, but it’s the name of the game,” said Veilleux. “It happens. I just got the opportunity, and I made the most of it. I prepared like I would any week, and I capitalized on the opportunity. I just got a lot of stuff that I could take from that game and take it to spring ball, to camp, to summer. I feel like I have a base knowledge of what my game is at this level.”
Against Rutgers, the Canadian threw for 235 yards and three touchdowns. But, he also showed his mobility, rushing for 36 yards
“I can make plays on my feet, obviously I can throw the ball,” said Veilleux. “I feel like I’m more of a pocket passer than a mobile guy, so I want to kill you guys throwing the ball rather than run it.”
Veilleux and Clifford welcomed a pair of highly recruited freshman quarterbacks to the room, a move that is inevitable in college football, but nonetheless a learning opportunity.
“You just know that every single year, they’re going to bring guys in,” said Veilleux. “So, whether it’s one or two, I don’t think it makes a difference. At the end of the day, we add value to our room. Bringing in Drew [Allar] and Beau [Pribula], just the talent that they have combined makes everyone else better. Like, I learn from them and they’re true freshmen.”
Both Veilleux and Pribula wore #9 during spring practice. But, Veilleux made the switch to #11 for the fall.