Primetime Game Returns to Beaver Stadium
Disappointment was felt by many last summer when it was made official that there would be no primetime games in Beaver Stadium for the 2011 season. This marked the first time since 2004 that fans would not be able to experience the true “Great Show” — a game under the lights in Beaver Stadium. Things will be different in 2012.
It was announced this afternoon that the October 27th home contest against Ohio State will kickoff at 6 pm and will air on either ESPN or ESPN2. While this is not the 8:00 start that many might prefer, a 6 pm start in late October means Beaver Stadium will be under the lights for most of the game as Bill O’Brien and Urban Meyer square off for the first time.
The week before, Penn State will play a primetime game in Kinnick Stadium vs. Iowa that is scheduled to begin at 8 pm and air on the Big Ten Network.
Since 2005, home games at night have been a bit of a mixed bag for the Nittany Lions. There was the thrilling 17-10 win over Ohio State in 2005 where Joe Paterno’s squad announced to a national audience that it had indeed returned to prominence. 2006 resulted in a dull 17-10 loss to Michigan. 2007 featured a 6 pm 31-10 win over Notre Dame followed by a late October 37-17 ugly loss to Ohio State. There was a 38-24 victory over Illinois in the Big Ten Opener in 2008, a crushing 21-10 loss to Iowa in 2009, and a thrilling 41-31 victory over Michigan in 2010 where defense was relatively non-existent.
Despite this relatively average 4-3 record in prime time games, most fans have to be thrilled knowing there will be a night game this year. Beaver Stadium is a sight to behold under the lights, and if Penn State has a good start to the season, this game could have some big ramifications.