Sports Illustrated Ranks Nittany Lions 24th in Power Rankings
Penn State couldn’t quite crack the top-25 in the AP or USA Today Coach’s polls after defeating Rutgers this weekend, but at least Sports Illustrated is giving the Nittany Lions some respect. The magazine put Penn State as No. 24 in its weekly poll, giving the team its first top-25 appearance in in any national ranking this season.
The Sports Illustrated commentary threw in a well-placed Rutgers dig, and alluded to the possibility of Penn State winning the inarguably struggling conference.
Kevin Manahan of NJ.com penned a column on Sunday arguing that Penn State doesn’t respect Rutgers. If that doesn’t prove — along with this fan and this sign — that Rutgers is already Big Ten as all heck, I don’t know what will. As for the Nittany Lions, they scraped by in Piscataway, N.J., but did so in the type of game they haven’t won for the past few seasons. Penn State is eligible for the postseason again, and it has as good a chance as anyone to win the conference.
Penn State hasn’t been ranked in either of the two major polls — AP and USA Today — since the 2011 season. Coming in at 30 point favorites against UMass this weekend, with the 0-2 Northwestern Wildcats on deck next weekend, it’s hard not to see that streak coming to an end in the near future.
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