Penn State Football

Penn State Football: Going behind enemy lines with Purdue

Penn State Football kicks off the season under the lights on Thursday night, Sept. 1, as the Nittany Lions open up on the road at Purdue.

To get a better view of Purdue, Nittany Central talked to Mike Carmin, who covers the Boilermakers for The Journal and Courier.

1. Your Initial thoughts on Penn State vs Purdue

Carmin: Should be a close game as both teams try to figure out what they have this season.
Purdue has experience coming back, but lost its star power with George Karlaftis and David Bell going to the NFL.
The Boilermakers won’t be able to replace the talent but can get similar production from a group of players. Interested to see the progress of Penn State’s offensive line and how effective the Lions are running the ball. 

2. Who on Offense should Penn State be concerned

Carmin: Start with Aidan O’Connell, the sixth-year quarterback. He hasn’t played as many games as Sean Clifford but his efficiency last season was off the charts.
Two Iowa transfers at receiver – Tyrone Tracy and Charlie Jones – will be the main targets. Tracy will also play running back. I’ve always liked tight end Payne Durham, who is set for a big season.

3. For those who don’t follow Purdue, what makes this matchup very interesting

Carmin: The Boilermakers are coming off a nine-win season and Jeff Brohm enters his sixth season and the program is heading in the right direction.
Purdue has a knack for knocking off top opponents at home under the lights and this is another opportunity. But, how O’Connell performs without Bell is one area to watch. Plus, Purdue’s defense played well last year and returns eight starters. The Boilermakers are more aggressive on that side of the ball.

4. Do you like the idea of starting the season with a Conference game

Carmin: Yes. In fact, I think every game – all 12 – should be conference games. No more non-conference games. Everyone you need to play is in your conference.

5. What is one reason why Purdue  defeats Penn State

Carmin: Purdue can’t lose the line of scrimmage battles.

Penn State has owned the Boilermakers based on playing better upfront in the series. The Boilermakers have experience on the offensive line and plenty of depth on the defensive line. They need to hold up to have a chance to win.

READ NEXT: Penn State Football at Purdue betting guide, predictions, more 

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About Author

David Malandra Jr.

I am Sports Reporter that covers Pro & College Sports in Philadelphia