Of the eight groups concerned within the 4 Top 25-ranked matchups scheduled for this weekend, few have flown underneath the radar as a lot as Penn State.
The Nittany Lions are ranked No. 10 and journey to Iowa City to face the No. 17 ranked Hawkeyes on Saturday night time with a reliable shot at enhancing their document for the season to 6-0.
Throughout the season, at any time when the highest groups within the nation have been mentioned, Penn State has recurrently been missed. Admittedly, it’s laborious for the Nittany Lions to face out as they share not solely the identical convention however the identical division with Ohio State, who has raced to 6-Zero and is at present ranked No. Three within the nation.
Beating a fellow Top 25-ranked workforce, nevertheless, would pressure rivals and pundits to sit down up and take discover and Penn State has the prospect to make a significant assertion of intent on Saturday night time.
Not that beating Iowa is an easy affair. The Nittany Lions could have received the final 5 video games in opposition to the Hawkeyes, however each of the final two conferences went right down to the wire.
Two years in the past, Penn State received on the highway because of Juwan Johnson’s landing on the ultimate play of the sport, whereas final season it wanted a late interception to safe a 30-24 win at residence.
The Nittany Lions, nevertheless, arrive in Iowa City as 3.5-point favourite, largely due to their dominant protection. Penn State has conceded simply 7.Four factors per recreation this season—second finest within the FBS—and racked up a staggering 10 sacks in its 35-7 win over Purdue final week.
The determine is a significant alarm bell for Iowa and never simply because the Nittany Lions lead the nation in sacks and tackles for loss.
Last week, Hawkeyes quarterback Nate Stanley was sacked eight instances because the offensive line repeatedly crumbled in entrance of him throughout Iowa’s 10-Three defeat on the highway agains No. 16 Michigan.
Stanley, nevertheless, urged Iowa was relishing the prospect of going through such a dominant defensive unit.
”I feel that is truthfully the most effective factor that may occur for us,” the senior sign caller, who has thrown for 1,225 yards and eight touchdowns to date this season, was quoted as saying by the Associated Press.
”We know these guys are an excellent protection, tops within the nation in numerous statistical classes. We know that there is not any time to really feel sorry for us, that we have now to get again on the horse and put together and prepare to play.”
Against Michigan, Iowa failed to attain a landing for the primary time this season, however misplaced 65 yards to sacks and gave away eight penalties for a mixed 60 yards.
The loss left Iowa at 4-1 and noticed the Hawkeyes drop from 14 to 17 within the rankings and coach Kirk Ferentz admitted his workforce must minimize down errors in opposition to Penn State.
”Penn State has acquired nice athletes they usually play laborious and might be very disruptive, too,” he stated.
“We are going to should hopefully have a bit tighter plan possibly and be a bit bit tighter with our approach and a bit higher, extra cohesive in our play.”
Here’s all it is advisable to know forward of Saturday.
When and the place is the sport?
The Iowa Hawkeyes host the Penn State Nittany Lions at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City on Saturday, October 12.
Kick-off is scheduled 6:30 p.m. native time (7:30 p.m. ET).
The recreation will probably be broadcast nationally on ABC.
A dwell stream will probably be accessible through ABC’s digital platforms.
Penn State holds a slight edge over Iowa, having received 16 of the 28 conferences between the 2 applications.
The Nittany Lions have received the final 5 video games in opposition to Iowa, defeating Hawkeyes 30-24 final 12 months.
According to BetOnline, Penn State is a 3.5-point favourite and is 89/100 to win and canopy the unfold, whereas Iowa is an 8/5 outsider. The over/underneath bar when it comes to whole factors scored is about at 41.5.