The Nittany Lions won their first Big Ten game today, defeating Minnesota 33-21. No reason for parades in State College or anything like that, but it was a much better effort than their past two contests.
Penn State improves to 4-3, (1-2) following two weeks of grueling practices after a particularly embarrassing loss to Illinois at home. Joe Paterno, who took full blame for the team’s disappointing performance this season, won his 398th game against a team whose interim head coach has been on the job less than a week.
After the loss to the Fighting Illini, Paterno promised changes from his coaching staff and they delivered.
Rob Bolden threw for 131 yards and a touchdown, but Matt McGloin saw significant time under center, too – he was six for 13 for 77 yards but threw two touchdown passes and one pick. Derek Moye caught just three passes but they were for 81 yards and two touchdowns!
The Golden Gophers QB Adam Webber threw for 299 yards to surpass 10,000 in his career but the Nittany Lions did manage to force a turnover, a 62-yard interception by D’Anton Lynn.
Evan Royster needed 90 yards to become the school’s all-time rushing leader, and he didn’t make it. Royster gained 62 (and scored), while Silas Redd rushed for a whopping 70 yards. Penn State’s ground game is not its strength this year.
It’s a so-so season in Happy Valley. Next week the Nittany Lions host Michigan in a late game. That’s always a good match-up despite the teams’ records. From here on out, it should be about improving each week, avoiding mistakes, and playing their best. No Rose Bowl bid awaits them by any stretch but Penn State can have a decent season still. All is not lost.
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Written by Stephanie Geosits