Penn State Looking for Halloween Victory in Beaver Stadium
For the first time in eight years, No. 18 Nittany Lions start 0-1 heading into the rivalry game against the No. 3 Buckeyes tonight. With the uncertainty of the season, this is a must-win for Penn State if they want a Big Ten East title.
What does this primetime Halloween game bring? Well, it’s spooky season and what would be spookier than a 0-2 start to the season for Penn State? This week The Nittany Lions needed to fix their mistakes after last weeks 36 -35 loss to Indiana.
Michael Penix Jr. led the Hoosiers to a 36 -35 overtime win over The Nittany Lions, Indiana’s first victory over a top-10 opponent since 1988 was a wake-up call for James Franklin and his players.
Today will be the 36th all-time meeting between Penn State and Ohio State. The Nittany Lions have won once in the series since 2011. Ohio State has won three of its past four games at Penn State.
A major home advantage isn’t in the books for Penn State – their White Out crowd spanning throughout Beaver Stadiums 106,572 seat capacity is out of the question. Penn State is 26-2 since 2016 in Beaver Stadium and The Nits need to find it deep within themselves to create the electric energy that won’t be exemplified throughout the stadium this year.
Penn State is down to its third-string running back for today’s game. Noah Cain suffered a season-ending ankle injury last week against Indiana and Journey Brown is sidelined by an undisclosed medical condition. Different legs stepped up, quarterback Sean Clifford was a threat and took responsibility within himself. Clifford’s 119 yards on 17 carries accounted for almost half the rushing total against Indiana. Let’s not forget he went 24-for-35 for 238 yards and threw 3 touchdowns. So far, Clifford has had zero rushing yards against Ohio State and never ran for more than 57 yards in a game before.
Justin Fields also contributed with his legs for The Buckeyes. Give Fields room and he loves to scramble. Fields currently has eight scrambles for 55 yards and accounted for 330 total yards. He also connected on 20-of-21 passes. Fields, last year in the battle between The Buckeyes and The Nittany Lions, had two touchdowns with no picks and went 16-of-22 passing for 188 yards.
Despite Ohio State being favored by 12.5 against Penn State – this game should be an absolute Halloween thriller.