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5/21- Nittany Nation Report: Big Ten Announces 2015 and 2016

<p style="margin-bottom: 12pt;" class="Normal"><span style='color: #1b2a50; font-family: "Times","Arial"; font-weight: bold; text-decoration: none;' class="Normal__Char">Nebraska, Iowa</span><span style='color: #1b2a50; font-family: "Times","Arial"; font-weight: bold;' class="Normal__Char"> and Eastern Rival Rutgers Visit in 2015; Penn State Hosts Ohio State, Wisconsin and Michigan State in 2016</span></p>

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa.; May 21, 2012 - Penn State will resume its rivalries with Michigan State and Iowa and continue to clash with Wisconsin in the regular season finale during the 2015 and 2016 football seasons, as the Big Ten Conference today announced the conference schedules for both years.

Michigan State, winner of the 2011 Big Ten Legends Division, will return to the Nittany Lions' schedule in 2015 for the first time since the 2010 season. The Nittany Lions and Spartans played every season from 1993-2010, with the winner capturing the Land Grant Trophy. Penn State is 13-5 against Michigan State since starting Big Ten competition in 1993 and leads the overall series, 14-13-1.

Legends Division member Iowa also returns to the Nittany Lions' schedule in 2015 after rotating off in 2013 and '14. Penn State beat Iowa last year in Beaver Stadium and visits the Hawkeyes Oct. 20 for a 7 p.m. CT kick on BTN. In 2015, the Nittany Lions will host Big Ten foes Illinois (Oct. 3), Purdue (Oct. 24), Iowa (Nov. 7) and Nebraska (Nov. 21).

Penn State will have a blockbuster conference home schedule in 2016, hosting Michigan State (Nov. 12) and Leaders Division rivals Indiana (Oct. 15), Ohio State (Oct. 29) and Wisconsin (Nov. 26). The Nittany Lions and Badgers are meeting in the final regular season game every year from 2011-16.

When Nebraska joined the Big Ten in 2011-12, the conference instituted football divisions and a championship game. The divisional alignments that are:

LEADERS DIVISION - Penn State, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Purdue, Wisconsin

LEGENDS DIVISION - Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern

The winner of each Big Ten division will meet in the Big Ten Football Championship Game, to be played in primetime on December 1, 2012 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. The championship game will determine the Big Ten Champion and the conference's participant in the Rose Bowl Game or Bowl Championship Series National Championship Game. FOX Sports is the official broadcast partner of the 2011-16 Big Ten Football Championship Games.

Each Big Ten team plays the other five schools within its division and also faces three teams from the other division, including one cross-division matchup guaranteed, on an annual basis. Penn State's guaranteed cross-division matchup is Nebraska and the two national powers resumed their rivalry last season. The teams will meet in Memorial Stadium on Nov. 10, 2012 for their first clash in Lincoln since 2003.

Among the highlights of Penn State's 2015 and 2016 non-conference schedules are renewals of series with Rutgers and Pitt and two meetings with Temple. The Nittany Lions visit Rutgers Sept. 13, 2014 and will host the Scarlet Knights on Sept. 19, 2015. Penn State visits Pitt on Sept. 10, 2016 and the Panthers return to Beaver Stadium on Sept. 16, 2017.

The Big Ten-Pac-12 collaboration in football is scheduled to begin by the 2017 season, with the objective to create an annual 12 inter-conference game schedule between the two conferences. The plan calls for each school to play an opponent from the other conference every year with some flexibility built into the process to respect existing post-2017 FBS non-conference match-ups.

During the 2014 season, Penn State will host Massachusetts, which is joining the Mid-American Conference this year as a football member. The Nittany Lions and Minutemen will be meeting for the first time. (2012-16 schedules are below).

Penn State returns 36 letterwinners and 10 starters for the upcoming season (5 offense, 4 defense, 1 specialist), as well as 17 players that have starting experience. The 17 additional players with starting experience have a combined total of 78 starts among them.

Season tickets are available for the 2012 season, with the Nittany Lions hosting five teams that played in a bowl game last year and playing 10 bowl teams overall. Penn State will host Ohio State (Oct. 27), Wisconsin (Nov. 24-Senior Day), Northwestern (Oct. 6-Homecoming), Indiana (Nov. 17), Navy (Sept. 15), Temple (Sept. 22-All-University Day) and Ohio (Sept. 1) in Beaver Stadium this fall.

For information on joining the Nittany Lion Club and purchasing season tickets, as well as club seating in Beaver Stadium, fans can visit www.GoPSUsports.com or call 1-800-648-8269 (1-800-NITTANY) weekdays from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. The pricing of 2012 Penn State football game tickets and accompanying donation levels is the same as in 2011.

Penn State Athletics is on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/pennstatenittanylions) and Twitter (http://www.gopsusports.com/ot/twitter.html).

Penn State Football Schedules (2012-16)

2012

Sept. 1 OHIO

Sept. 8 at Virginia

Sept. 15 NAVY

Sept. 22 TEMPLE

(All-University Day)

Sept. 29 at Illinois

Oct. 6 NORTHWESTERN

(Homecoming)

Oct. 20 at Iowa

Oct. 27 OHIO STATE

Nov. 3 at Purdue

Nov. 10 at Nebraska

Nov. 17 INDIANA

Nov. 24 WISCONSIN

Dec. 1 Big Ten Championship Game

(Lucas Oil Stadium; Indianapolis)

2013

Aug. 31 vs. Syracuse

(at MetLife Stadium; East Rutherford, N.J.)

Sept. 7 EASTERN MICHIGAN

Sept. 14 VIRGINIA

Sept. 21 KENT STATE

Oct. 5 at Indiana

Oct. 12 MICHIGAN

(Homecoming)

Oct. 26 at Ohio State

Nov. 2 ILLINOIS

Nov. 9 at Minnesota

Nov. 16 PURDUE

Nov. 23 NEBRASKA

Nov. 30 at Wisconsin

Dec. 7 Big Ten Championship Game

(Lucas Oil Stadium; Indianapolis)

2014

Aug. 30 TEMPLE

Sept. 6 AKRON

Sept. 13 at Rutgers

Sept. 20 MASSACHUSETTS

Sept. 27 MINNESOTA

Oct. 11 at Nebraska

Oct. 18 INDIANA

(Homecoming)

Oct. 25 at Michigan

Nov. 1 at Purdue

Nov. 15 OHIO STATE

Nov. 22 at Illinois

Nov. 29 WISCONSIN

Dec. 6 Big Ten Championship Game

(Lucas Oil Stadium; Indianapolis)

2015

Sept. 5 at Temple

Sept. 12 BUFFALO

Sept. 19 RUTGERS

Sept. 26 TBA

Oct. 3 ILLINOIS

Oct. 10 at Ohio State

Oct. 24 PURDUE

Oct. 31 at Indiana

Nov. 7 IOWA

Nov. 14 at Michigan State

Nov. 21 NEBRASKA

Nov. 28 at Wisconsin

Dec. 5 Big Ten Championship Game

(Lucas Oil Stadium; Indianapolis)

2016

Sept. 3 KENT STATE

Sept. 10 at Pittsburgh

Sept. 17 TEMPLE

Sept. 24 TBA

Oct. 1 at Illinois

Oct. 15 INDIANA

Oct. 22 at Purdue

Oct. 29 OHIO STATE

Nov. 5 at Iowa

Nov. 12 MICHIGAN STATE

Nov. 19 at Nebraska

Nov. 26 WISCONSIN

Dec. 3 Big Ten Championship Game

(Location TBD)

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