Big 10

2017 Gameday – Nittany Lions, Panthers set for Prime Time

September 15, 2017

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Penn State closes out its nonconference slate hosting Georgia State in a prime time matchup on BTN

Sept. 15, 2017

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – No. 5 Penn State football (2-0, 0-0 B1G) is back in Beaver Stadium for a third consecutive week, hosting Georgia State (0-1, 0-0 Sun Belt) in a prime time matchup Saturday.

In the first meeting between the two teams in program history, the Nittany Lions close out the nonconference slate with a 7:30 p.m. kickoff live on the Big Ten Network. 

On a nine-game home winning streak, Penn State’s high-scoring explosive offense will also look to stretch its nine-game streak scoring 30-plus, with a program record 33 or more points in as many outings.

Quarterback Trace McSorley and running back Saquon Barkley are also streaking. With at least one touchdown pass in 17 consecutive games, McSorley’s touchdown pass streak is the third longest in FBS, while Barkey’s nine straight rushing touchdowns is tied for the longest in FBS. 

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Penn State’s defense hasn’t missed a beat this year, currently leading the conference and ranked seventh in FBS in scoring defense, averaging just 7.0 points per game surrendered on the year.

Safety Marcus Allen led the way with a game-high 12 tackles last weekend, including Penn State’s first safety since 2010 to earn Lott Impact Player of the Week honors. Allen and cornerback Grant Haley both earned staff defensive player of the week honor, with Haley triggering the Nittany Lion offense right from the start, with a first quarter interception that he returned 42 yards.

A BIG time take down by @Chico_Hndrxx for 2⃣ points. pic.twitter.com/40QIE7bXiE

— Penn State Football (@PennStateFball) September 11, 2017

Rounding out Penn State’s early success in all three phases, the Nittany Lion special teams unit has been instrumental in the 2-0 start, especially key in a 33-14 win against Pittsburgh last week.

“I thought probably one of the biggest factors in the game was drive start,” Franklin said. “Our drive start was the 36-yard line. Their drive start was the 18.”

Guided by first year head coach Shawn Elliott, Georgia State enters the weekend fresh off an early bye week, having dropped its season opener in a 17-10 loss to Tennessee State.

“I think the thing that probably jumps out to me is essentially this same team went to Wisconsin last year and was leading in the fourth quarter,” Franklin said. “So they are going to be used to playing in these Big Ten type of environments on the road.” 

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