Entering the 2013 campaign, Bill O'Brien has stated on numerous occasions that he has been pleased with the leadership he sees coming from a wide variety of players, not just the senior class. A player to be counted on in the leadership group is junior defensive back Adrian Amos, a probable All-Big Ten candidate. While the 2012 season was his first as a starter, Amos enters the season as one of the veterans in the secondary and on defense. A 2013 third-team preseason All-Big Ten selection by Phil Steele's College Football Preview, Amos earned honorable-mention All-Big Ten from the coaches and media last year after recording 44 tackles, two interceptions and 2.5 tackles for loss. The vastly talented and hard-hitting Amos started every game at cornerback in 2012, but spent the bulk of the most recent spring practice at strong safety. He brings outstanding athleticism, skills, work-ethic and instincts to the field and weight room. Amos' commitment in the strength and conditioning program has seen him maintain his approximate playing weight from last year, while improving his speed and strength. His :4.45 40-yard time and 35.5-inch vertical jump were second-best on the squad through the spring. A former Baltimore prep Defensive Player-of-the-Year, he is poised to be a player of significant impact the next two seasons. Amos was a prep teammate of Nittany Lion sophomores Da'Quan Davis and Trevor Williams, who also are defensive backs, at Calvert Hall College High School. They are among 12 returning Nittany Lions from Maryland.
2012 (Sophomore Season)
Amos started all 12 games at cornerback, playing in every contest for the second consecutive year. He was selected honorable-mention All-Big Ten by the coaches and media. Amos was eighth on the team with 44 tackles (31 solo) and was tied for second with two interceptions. He also recorded 2.5 tackles for loss, 0.5 sacks and three pass breakups. He played an instrumental role for a defense that ranked second in the Big Ten and No. 16 nationally in scoring defense at 19.1 ppg, holding six teams to 17 or fewer points. Amos recorded a career-high 10 tackles in the season-opener with Ohio. He made six stops (five solo) at Virginia, including a tackle for loss. Amos recorded three solo hits in the 34-7 win over Navy to help Bill O'Brien post his first career head coaching victory and made three tackles and added 0.5 TFL in the 35-7 Big Ten-opening victory at Illinois. Amos grabbed his first interception of the season, inside Ohio State territory, registered five tackles and had a pass breakup against the Buckeyes. He made five hits (four solo) in the 34-9 win at Purdue and had four solo tackles, with one TFL, and a pass breakup at No. 18 Nebraska. In the 45-22 win over Indiana, Amos made four tackles, had a pass breakup and grabbed a fourth-quarter interception inside the Penn State 10-yard line and returned it 54 yards.
2011 (Freshman Season)
Amos appeared in every game at cornerback and on special teams, making one start. He totaled 13 tackles, one interception, four pass breakups and five passes defended. He was one of four true freshmen to see action. In his first career game as a Nittany Lion, Amos made two tackles and returned an interception 46 yards against Indiana State. His pick came in the fourth quarter and set up an eventual Shane McGregor touchdown run to give Penn State a 41-0 lead. Amos made two tackles against Eastern Michigan and two tackles and two pass breakups in the Big Ten-opening win at Indiana. He made his first career start in the win over Iowa and recorded two tackles and one pass breakup. In a strong second-half effort in the victory at Northwestern, Amos posted two tackles and a pass breakup. He also recorded two tackles against Houston in the TicketCity Bowl. Amos logged a total of 301 plays in 2011, including a career-high 70 against Iowa in his first career start.
Amos led Calvert Hall College High School to the MIAA Class A Conference Championship and the No. 1 state ranking. As a senior for Coach Donald Davis, Amos recorded 78 tackles and four interceptions, while forcing three fumbles as a safety. He was named all-met and was the Baltimore City Defensive Player-of-the-Year.
Full name is Adrian Gerald Amos Jr. He is majoring in recreation, parks and tourism management. Born April 29, 1993.