Penn State Blanks Indiana Amidst Saturday Night Stripeout
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The Penn State Nittany Lions hosted the Indiana Hoosiers under the lights with 105,951 fans in attendance for a primetime “Stripe Out” game.
After losing to the Hoosiers in the first game of the 2020 season, the Nittany Lions looked for an opportunity for revenge against the Crimson and Cream. Going into the matchup, Penn State won 22 of its last 24 contests.
The first possessions for the Hoosiers and Nittany Lions did not progress far down the field. Hoosiers quarterback Michael Penix Jr. found tight end Peyton Hendershot for a 35-yard pass on the second possession of the quarter, but could not convert on third down.
Penn State quarterback Sean Clifford moved the Blue and White down the field utilizing both the running and passing game.
Clifford’s 9-yard pass to wide receiver Parker Washington and a pass interference call on Indiana defensive back Jaylin Williams pushed the Nittany Lions to Indiana’s 10-yard line.
The 13-play possession ended with Clifford reaching tight end Brenton Strange in the left corner of the endzone for a 10-yard touchdown. Penn State established a 7-0 lead against the Hoosiers with five minutes and 28 seconds to go in the first quarter.
Looking to respond, Penix’s pass intended for Indiana wide receiver Ty Fryfogle on third down was denied by Penn State cornerback Tariq Castro-Fields for a turnover on downs.
Indiana cut the Nittany Lions’ possession short when Indiana defensive back Raheem Layne intercepted Clifford’s pass for a 23-yard return. The Penn State secondary prevented the Hoosiers from reaching the endzone with no opportunity for a field goal attempt.
Penn State running back Keyvone Lee broke through the middle for a 44-yard gain into Hoosier territory. Strange advanced to the endzone for a touchdown, but the ruling was reversed with an illegal touching 5-yard penalty called on Strange.
On 2nd and 8, wide receiver Jahan Dotson grabbed a deep pass from Clifford to extend the Nittany Lions’ lead to 14-0 early in the second quarter.
The Nittany Lions secondary continued to pressure Penix in the pocket. At the end of the first half, the Hoosiers successfully converted on downs only four times to Penn State’s 10.
After sitting in their own territory, Penix’s 34-yard pass to wide receiver Miles Marshall placed the Hoosiers into a position to score. Penn State cornerback Joey Porter Jr. interrupted Indiana’s momentum with his first career interception.
Penn State’s defense hindered Indiana from reaching midfield. With 10 minutes and 43 seconds remaining in the third quarter, Penix was assisted to the locker room with an undisclosed injury. Hoosiers quarterback Jack Tuttle replaced Penix in the pocket.
Penn State defensive end Arnold Ebiketie sacked Tuttle on his first play for a loss of seven yards. The Hoosiers did not convert on downs.
Clifford’s 13-yard rush into Hoosier territory set up the Blue and White for a red zone attempt. After nine plays, a 30-yard touchdown pass to Dotson increased Penn State’s lead over Indiana 21-0.
Indiana marched down the field but was unable to find the end zone. A 30-yard field goal attempt by Hoosier kicker Charles Campbell to get on the scoreboard did not find the uprights with Penn State linebacker Brandon Smith blocking the kick.
At the start of the fourth quarter, Penn State’s playcall had Dotson at the helm with a 21-yard pass to fellow wide receiver Washington. On the Indiana 24 yardline facing a 3rd and 14, Clifford broke through the Hoosier secondary for an 18-yard gain.
Three consecutive rushing attempts were unsuccessful in the red zone, warranting a turnover on downs. Following a three-and-out possession for the Hoosiers, Penn State kicker Jordan Stout completed a 50-yard field goal attempt with eight minutes and six seconds remaining in the game.
Penn State backup quarterback Ta’Quan Roberson replaced Clifford in the final minutes of the matchup. As the clock ticked down to 0, the Nittany Lions defeated a scoreless Indiana 24-0.
The Hoosiers fall 2-3 overall and historically remain winless at Beaver Stadium. The Nittany Lions move to 5-0 and are one of four teams in the Big Ten Conference with undefeated records in the 2021 season.
Emma Holtz is a second-year majoring in public relations. To contact her, email email@example.com