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Penn State Resolve Helps Keep Game Close

Posted By Jeremy Hall On Nov 13 2011 @ 10:39 am In Penn State | No Comments

The Penn State Nittany Lions dropped a hard fought contest 17-14 to the Nebraska Cornhuskers on Senior Day in Beaver Stadium yesterday afternoon. Despite being down 17-0 with 8:51 remaining in the 3rd quarter, the Nittany Lions clawed their way back into the game and put themselves in a position to at least force the Cornhuskers to beat them in overtime. Their comeback effort fell a little bit short, but no one can take away the effort and tenacity displayed by the Nittany Lions. It would have been just as easy for the Nittany Lions to pack it in and call it a day trailing 17-0 late in the second half considering the implausible events that unfolded this past week in State College. Honestly, Penn State could have lost 34-0 and no one would have given it a second thought. Any number of excuses could have been used to dismiss a loss like that in the aftermath of this horrific scandal. However, the players recruited to represent Penn State on the gridiron rose above everything that transpired this week and showed the nation just how much pride and character they truly possess.

Once again the ferocious Nittany Lion defense kept Penn State in the game limiting Nebraska to 331 total yards of offense (143 Passing and 188 Rushing). In fact, Penn State held Nebraska to 64 yards below their season rushing yards per game average of 252. The Nittany Lions will need this type of effort down the stretch from their defense in order to win the Big Ten Leaders Division and give themselves an opportunity to play in the inaugural Big Ten Championship Game. Matt McGloin threw for 193 yards by completing 16 out of 34 passes on the day. McGloin needs to do a better job of finding other options when his primary target is not open. He has a tendency to throw into double and triple coverage at times, which fortunately for Penn State, have for the most part resulted in incomplete passes. Silas Redd was held under 100 yards rushing for the first time in 6 games, although this was more attributable to the injury he sustained than the Cornhusker defense. Stephfon Green had a big day on the ground by rushing for 71 yards and two touchdowns. Derek Moye returned to the starting lineup Saturday and seemed to be playing at 100% after being side lined for two weeks with a foot injury. Moye had 4 receptions for 78 yards. After dropping to 8-2 (5-1 Big Ten) overall on the season with yesterday’s loss, the Nittany Lions turn their focus to the rival Ohio State Buckeyes for a key matchup next Saturday at “The Horseshoe”. Penn State still clings to a one game lead over Wisconsin in the Big Ten Leaders Division, but they definitely need to win in Columbus to guarantee at least a share of the division title.

The Cornhuskers did enough to thwart a late Penn State rally in Beaver Stadium yesterday and were led by their dual threat quarterback, Taylor Martinez (13 out of 26 for 143 yards and 56 yards on 19 carries). Nebraska will continue to lean on Martinez as they make a run towards a Big Ten Legends Division crown and a potential spot in the Big Ten Championship game. Nebraska standout running back, Rex Burkhead, also had a huge game as he ran for 121 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries. This performance exemplified how the underrated Burkhead is not only one of the best running backs in the Big Ten, but in the nation. Nebraska improved their record to 8-2 (4-2 Big Ten) overall with a huge road win in Happy Valley on Saturday. The Cornhuskers will now set their sights on a showdown with the Michigan Wolverines in Ann Arbor next weekend. Both teams head into the game tied for second place in the Big Ten Legends Division.

Team Stat Comparison


Penn State Nittany Lions

Nebraska Cornhuskers

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