Penn State Football suffered a serious setback in a disappointing loss to No. 3 Ohio State, but has a serious opportunity to bounce back on Saturday against Indiana.
While the Nittany Lions‘ climb back into the College Football Playoff conversation appears to be a monumental one, it has to start by beating the Hoosiers.
Your Initial thoughts on Penn State Football vs Indiana
That Indiana is overmatched.
Penn State coach James Franklin is recruiting at a much higher level more comparable to Michigan and Ohio State while Indiana is left scouring the high school ranks for diamonds in the rough (ala Jaylin Lucas) and placing a much greater emphasis on bringing in potential starters in the transfer portal.
It’s hard to come up with one NFL prospect for IU’s roster right now while Penn State is putting a half dozen in the league on an annual basis.
Who on offense should Penn State be concerned?
Penn State Football has a promising young quarterback in place, multiple effective running backs and go-to wide receiver while Indiana would love just one of things right now.
The numbers show how much the Hoosiers are struggling to any kind of consistent option: 311.7 total yards per game (ranked No. 118 out of 133 FBS teams, 113.7 rushing yards (No. 112), 198 passing (No. 102) and 17.9 points (No. 125).
They changed their offensive coordinator during the bye week and changed quarterbacks through the first seven weeks of the season. They are going with redshirt freshman Brendan Sorsby on Saturday, who has been uneven throughout his time in the lineup.
What did you take away from last year’s battle
Indiana quarterback Dexter Williams is working his way back from a torn ACL. He made his collegiate debut in the Penn State game last year and it would be a nice bit of symmetry if he were to make it back into the game this weekend.
The coaching staff has pledged to have some sort of role for him when he returns and his effectiveness as a runner could make him effective in short yardage situations or in a package of plays in the red zone.
Other than that, Indiana just has a hard time hanging with the top teams in the Big Ten for four full quarters.
For those who don’t follow Indiana what makes this matchup very interesting
Indiana’s last five games will have a big impact on the direction of the program.
Coach Tom Allen is 2-21 against Power Five opponents since 2021 and haven’t been competitive in recent weeks. If the staff has any chance of remaining in place, they show some signs of progress for the administration and fanbase.
What is one reason why Indiana takes down Penn State
Penn State lets the disappoint linger from losing another hard-fought game against Ohio State, but even that feels like a stretch. It would be a true stunner if IU heads back to Bloomington victorious.