[Live Blog] Penn State Vs. Buffalo
Good morning and welcome back to football, Penn State fans! The Nittany Lions kickoff with Buffalo at noon today in the second game of the year. We will have updates throughout the game on this page, including game analysis, photos, and more. Here’s the media information you’ll need, and here’s our staff’s game predictions.
The game came to an uneventful end, as Saquon Barkley was given free reign to run out the clock, and he did just that. Penn State allowed zero sacks in the win, and a complete game from every unit ended it, 27-14. Thanks for following along.
9:02 — Buffalo started off its next series with its 14th penalty, but then picked up first downs with ease. One of Buffalo’s longest drives of the day ended with a touchdown at the 4:38 mark of the fourth quarter.
11:18 — Buffalo’s next possession on offense amounted to nothing — that Barkley hurdle completely destroyed the momentum — and Penn State took over again ready to attack. A deep pass intended for Chris Godwin fell incomplete, but a pass interference call gave the Lions another chance. Next, a deep pass intended to Chris Godwin was somehow hauled in in highlight fashion. The drive ended with a touchdown by — who else — Saquon Barkley.
15:00 — Penn State opened up the quarter with a three-minute touchdown drive, highlighted by Saquon Barkley doing this:
5:33 — A solid kick return from Malik Golden gave Penn State good starting field position once more. Hackenberg finally got Mike Gesicki in on the offense before Akeel Lynch rushed for a first down. The Nittany Lions kept moving down the field thanks to very, very nice play from Hackenberg. Despite an eventual first-and-goal from the five-yard line, the team settled for a field goal to take a 13-7 lead.
10:12 — After two short gains, Buffalo’s running back broke off a 29-yard gain for a first down. Later in the drive, Buffalo used a shovel pass to its advantage to convert a fourth down. Two plays later, a 14-yard lob found a receiver in the end zone as the Bulls narrowed the margin, now 10-7.
12:21 — Penn State took over at midfield. Then, John Donovan got to run his offense, and three carries by Saquon Barkley in a row brought up a fourth-and-2.
15:00 — Buffalo received to start the half, and yet another chop block penalty by the Bulls set up a first-and-22. On third down, the quarterback stepped away from one sack and right into Garrett Sickels, Carl Nassib, and Austin Johnson.
1:23 — Another solid Thompkins return set up the offense nicely, but there wasn’t enough time on the clock to find the end zone.
3:58 — Buffalo started at the 25-yard line. The Bulls moved the chains right away, but appeared to fumble soon after. The play was reviewed and they kept possession. A run on third and 23 was stuffed by Zettel and ended the drive.
6:30 — Buffalo’s next drive, now down 7-0, ended swiftly as Anthony Zettel batted a pass into the hands of Carl Nassib. This set Penn State up nicely in the red zone, though it couldn’t reach the end zone. Joey Julius converted a chip shot to put his team ahead 10-0 with 3:58 to go in the half.
7:49 — Touchdown Penn State! DeAndre Thompkins set up a score with a 58-yard punt return, then Brandon Polk finished it off with a 22-yard rush two plays later.
8:24 — As inept as Penn State’s offense was on the last possession, its defense was completely polarizing. Buffalo’s drive resulted in nothing and immediately punted.
10:15 — After a media timeout, the drive started with Penn State needing to call a timeout. Then, a first-down screen pass fell incomplete before reaching DaeSean Hamilton! For the first time this season (read: 20 minutes into the home opener), fans let the play-callers know how they felt as the boos rained down.
13:32 — Buffalo, despite its fifth false start penalty of the day, was able to get to midfield before Austin Johnson blew up the quarterback on consecutive plays.
15:00 — Hackenberg was pressured right at the start of the quarter and had some words for his linemen as they left the field. Joey Julius attempted a 49-yard field goal and had the distance, but sailed wide right to keep the game scoreless.
5:29 — Penn State finally picked up its first first down of the game, then converted plenty more en route to the 35-yard line to end the quarter.
9:42 — The Bulls took over at their 30 yard line after a shoddy punt from Dan Pasquariello. Solid defense held them back at first, until a debatable pass interference call on John Reid gave a free first down. Finally, consecutive penalties brought up a first and 20 for Buffalo, and it wasn’t able to move the chains after that, as the drive ended with a missed field goal.
11:23 — Penn State’s next possession started with three straight Akeel Lynch rushes for ten yards, but an illegal formation negated the first down and forced a punt.
12:00 — Buffalo’s first offensive possession was a three-and-out, and ended with a sack on third down from Carl Nassib. The Bulls ended up punting on 4th and 20, and this happened:
15:00 — Nick Scott took the opening kickoff at the goal line and returned it 58 yards to Buffalo’s 42 yard line. Right out of the gate, John Donovan’s offense played in a single-back formation, DaeSean Hamilton tallied two catches, and the offense went for it on fourth down. The conversion failed, but the offense is already more dynamic than it was in Philly.
Emotions were high before the game as a moment of silence was taken to honor the late Connor Darcey and Fran Fisher.
Grant Haley and Brandon Bell are in tracksuits, and will be sidelined for today’s game.
Rain has been in the forecast all week, and of course this is the time that the weatherman’s right.
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“Holy crap, it’s been 10 years? I’m old as hell!!”
Here’s everything you need to know — including media information, the weather, and injury updates — for Saturday’s game.
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