Rutgers (6-4) at 12. Penn State (8-2)
When: Saturday, November 18 at 12:00 p.m.
Where: Beaver Stadium
Watch: FOX Sports 1
Radio: See Penn State Radio Network
Follow Along: Nittany Nation Twitter Feed
Betting Line: Penn State -20.5
What a week in Happy Valley for Penn State football who fired head coach Mike Yurcich Sunday following the team’s letdown against Michigan. At his best, Yurcich coach an offense that scored 30 points in 13-straight games, won a rose bow, and saw freshman backs break records. But at its worse, it mustered just 27 total points, and 478 combined yard in the two losses. Coach Franklin was critical of play calling following the team’s loss to Michigan, and he doubled down this week.
“Whether it’s starting fast, all those things are things that we’ve had lengthy discussions about and had a plan for. But a lot of times when we got to the games, either we did not call the games that way or we did not execute the games the way the way, you know, the way we intended them to,” he said Monday.
Penn State must now flush the distraction and play a Rutgers squad who’s six wins is already the most since 2014.
Emotions will be on 10 for senior day as a number of key cogs play their final game at Beaver Stadium. While the COVID eligibility rules has made senior day more ambiguous, Saturday will be the last we see players like Olu Fashanu, Adisa Isaac and Kalen King who are not likely to use their remaining eligibility, and head to the NFL. Penn State will honor its seniors and a number of draft eligible underclassmen in a pregame ceremony beginning at 11:30 a.m.
Penn State has to win in the trenches if it’s to continue its dominance over Rutgers. The Nittany Lions are 26-1 all-time against the Scarlett Knights, and truthfully there is little to no reason to be concerned. But Rutgers isn’t the same pushover Penn State beat last year 55-10. Rutgers has a productive rushing attack led by the Big Ten’s leading rusher Kyle Monangai and quarterback Gavin Wimsatt. Rutgers has given up the fewest sacks in the Big Ten, while Penn State’s defense has recorded the most. If there is a path to a Rutgers stun, it’s keeping the Nittany Lions’ defensive line at bay.