After a 6-0 start and an unkind three-game stretch on the horizon, Penn State’s bye week couldn’t have come at a better time — especially for star tight end Mike Gesicki.
Gesicki, who was injured a few weeks ago against Indiana, played at Northwestern. He did so noticeably at less than 100 percent, but the senior knew the bye week was right around the corner. He knew he’d have time to rest up before the Nittany Lions’ White Out matchup with Michigan.
“Having that bye week after the Northwestern game was huge,” said Gesicki, who has four touchdown catches this year, during a Wednesday conference call. “I knew going into the Northwestern game that I was going to have to throw some pads on there and suck it up. I knew I’d have a week off.”
Gesicki — who gave credit to Tim Bream and Penn State’s athletic training staff after the Nittany Lions’ 31-7 win over Northwestern — left the Indiana game in the first quarter and didn’t return. The tight end took a hit to the lower left back, around the rib area.
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Still, Gesicki said he knew he’d play in Evanston the day after he took Indiana’s best shot. He woke up and felt as though he could deal with whatever pain or discomfort came up. The tight end caught two passes for nine yards at Northwestern and played 58 of 79 snaps, per 247 Sports — hardly a major impact, but still an encouraging sight.
Now that he’ll have 14 days between his last game and Michigan, Gesicki is A-OK for the White Out.
“Feeling good, feeling great,” Gesicki said. “Excited for Saturday.”