Nittany Lions Fall Victim to OSU Rally
COLUMBUS, Oh. – It was the game of the week, maybe even of the regular season.
Two top 10 teams playing for more than just a win on Saturday in the Horseshoe.
No. 2 Penn State traveled to No. 6 Ohio State, where the Buckeyes would hold their Black Out game, similar to Penn State’s White Out.
Throughout most of the game, redshirt senior quarterback J.T. Barrett and the Buckeyes had not held a lead.
Under two minutes left in the fourth quarter, the Buckeyes were threatening to take exactly that lead from the Penn State 16-yard line.
Down 38-33, Barrett found wide receiver Marcus Baugh on a crossing route for what would be the game-winning touchdown.
The Buckeyes decided to go for two and could not convert, but they maintained a 39-38 lead.
A game that was as good as advertised would end with that score, as Penn State could not muster any offense on the following drive, turning it over on downs.
Barrett finished the game 33-for-39 with 328 passing yards and four touchdown passes.
No. 16 showed why the Buckeyes owned the No. 2 ranked offense in the country, ultimately exposing Penn State’s top 10 total defense.
Junior running back Saquon Barkley added to his Heisman resume, even though he only amassed 49 yards of offense on the ground.
On the first play of the game, the Heisman hopeful received the opening kickoff and took it goal line to goal line for a touchdown that silenced a hyped-up Buckeye crowd.
Later on, Barkley would score from 36 yards on a rush up the middle that was bounced to the outside to put the Nittany Lions up, 21-3.
18 points was the largest deficit that the Buckeyes were behind, but they kept chipping away until they took over the lead.
The Penn State offensive line and the defense turned in poor performances against the Buckeyes.
The offensive line, on many plays, allowed the Buckeye defense in the backfield, forcing redshirt junior quarterback Trace McSorley to be rushed or Barkley to have nowhere to run.
The Nittany Lions entered Saturday with the No. 1 scoring defense and a top 10 total defense.
The end result said otherwise, as the Buckeyes were able to march up and down the field with little to no resistance.
The Buckeyes accumulated 529 total offensive yards, compared to Penn State’s 283.
Penn State did force two turnovers, but they were not enough to hold a surging Ohio State off.
Senior linebacker Koa Farmer recovered a fumble early in the game on the Buckeyes’ first drive, which led to a McSorley touchdown pass to redshirt senior DaeSean Hamilton on a fade route.
The other fumble came in the fourth quarter, where redshirt junior defensive end Shareef Miller fell on top of a botched exchange between Barrett and true freshman running back J.K. Dobbins.
Penn State falls to 7-1 overall, 4-1 in Big Ten play and will travel to Michigan State next Saturday.
As of right now, if Penn State and Ohio State were to both win out and finish with the same conference record, Ohio State would own the tiebreaker and represent the Big Ten East.
Zach Seyko is a senior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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