Penn State Football will kickoff the 2023 college football season before you know it, opening a campaign with legitimate College Football Playoff aspirations, on Sept. 2, under the lights against West Virginia.
James Franklin and the Nittany Lions boast one of the nation’s most talented rosters, and behind former five-star quarterback Drew Allar, have arguably the program’s best chance yet to contend for a national championship under the head coach’s arrival in Happy Valley a decade ago.
Allar leads an offense that includes arguably the nation’s premier running back duo, Nick Singleton and Kaytron Allen, fresh off a 2022 season that saw the pair of true freshman each rush for over 1,000 yards, with perhaps the best offensive line of Franklin’s tenure in front of them this fall.
Here’s a look at the 2023 Penn State Football schedule:
Week 1: vs. West Virginia, Sept.2 at 7:30 on NBC (TICKETS)
Week 2: vs. Delaware, Sept. 9, 3:30 p.m. on Peacock (TICKETS)
Week 3: @ Illinois, Sept. 16, noon on FOX (TICKETS)
Week 4: vs. Iowa, Sept. 23, 7:30 p.m. on CBS (TICKETS)
Week 5: @ Northwestern, Sept. 30, TBD (TICKETS)
Week 6: BYE
Week 7: vs. UMass, Oct. 14, TBD (TICKETS)
Week 8: @ Ohio State, Oct. 21, TBD (TICKETS)
Week 9: vs. Indiana, Oct. 28, TBD (TICKETS)
Week 10: @ Maryland, Nov. 4, TBD (TICKETS)
Week 11: vs. Michigan, noon on FOX (TICKETS)
Week 12: vs. Rutgers, TBD (Tickets)
Week 13: @ Michigan State, Friday Nov. 24, 2023, 7:30 p.m., Ford Field, Detroit (TICKETS)
Penn State Football Key Games For 2023
As always, for Penn State Football, the ceiling for Franklin’s team is going to come down to two games; at Ohio State, and vs. Michigan.
Penn State will likely open the preseason as one of the top-five teams in the nation. So, barring stumbling out of the gate and losing a game that they are favored to win early, there is a better than average chance that a split with Ohio State and Michigan could be enough to wind up in the College Football Playoff.
If Allar is the elite quarterback Penn State expects, this team is going to be one of the toughest outs in the nation.
In an ideal scenario, even if Penn State Football falls to either the Buckeyes or Wolverines, if the Lions win the tiebreaker and end up in Indianapolis, winning the Big Ten Conference Championship would all but assure a bid into the College Football Playoff. If the Lions’ lone blemish is a loss to either Michigan or Ohio State, they would be a tough team for the committee to keep out, unlike in 2016 when Penn State had also fallen to Pitt, in addition to a blowout loss at the Big House.