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[Live Blog] Penn State vs. Minnesota

Greetings from a rain-soaked Beaver Stadium, Penn State fans! James Franklin’s Nittany Lions welcome Minnesota this afternoon for the first Big Ten home game of the season. We’ll have live updates throughout today’s 3:30 contest on this page, including analysis, photos, tweets, and more. The game will air live on Big Ten Network. Here’s the media information you’ll need and here are our staff predictions.


:00 — The Nittany Lions won the toss and elected to play defense first. Minnesota settled for a 46-yard field goal to go up 26-23. Saquon Barkley took the opening play 25 yards to the house to win it for Penn State, 29-26. Thanks for following along!

Fourth Quarter

:54 — Penn State had no timeouts to try and get into field goal range. The Nittany Lions pulled off an incredible drive, thanks in large part to a 26-yard run by McSorley, to give Tyler Davis a 40-yard field goal try and he came up huge to tie the game at 23-23. Time expired and overtime is on the way.

5:34 — Minnesota burned as much clock as it could on its next drive, and it succeeded by kicking a 37-yard field goal to take a 23-20 lead with :54 left in the game.

7:45 — Penn State moved the chains on a 32-yard gem from McSorley to Chris Godwin on third and 15 from its own 15, but the Nittany Lions would eventually stall and punt the ball to the Minnesota 23-yard line.

11:36 — Minnesota made it to the Penn State 12-yard line, but on third and long, Mitch Leidner tossed a pick to Jordan Smith in the end zone. Smith’s first career interception was downed for a touchback and the Nittany Lions took over at the 20.

13:29 — The Nittany Lions couldn’t capitalize on Minnesota’s kickoff out-of-bounds, as they went three-and-out and Blake Gillikin was forced to punt it away.

15:00 — Minnesota would waste little time tying things up at 20-20 thanks to a 37-yard touchdown scamper from Shannon Brooks that capped off an impressive eight-play, 87-yard drive that spanned just under four minutes.

Third Quarter

2:27 — Joey Julius took an absolute cheap shot from Minnesota’s Jalen Waters on the ensuing kickoff and he was ejected from the game. Marcus Allen notched his game-high 16th tackle to stifle the Golden Gopher attack early in the drive. They would blow past midfield as Rodney Smith lowered his shoulder for a 15-yard gain. Time expired in the third quarter with Minnesota looking at first and 10 from the Penn State 43.

4:33 — McSorley went deep for Charles once more, but the Minnesota corner was draped all over him, resulting in a 15-yard pass interference call. McSorley hit a wide-open Mike Gesicki for 53 yards to set up first and goal from the six and the signal caller would take it in himself moments later to give the Nittany Lions a 20-13 lead.

7:28 — Curtis Cothran was tossed for targeting on Minnesota’s next drive, but the Golden Gophers again couldn’t manage much. Ryan Santoso had his punt downed at the Penn State 15-yard line.

8:25 — The Nittany Lions turned up the urgency on their next drive with a 36-yard gain to Chris Godwin over the middle to set up first and goal, but they would have to settle for a 27-yard field goal from Tyler Davis to tie things up at 13-13.

9:54 — Minnesota couldn’t get much going as it was held to a quick three-and-out. John Reid was interfered with while trying to make the fair catch and the Golden Gophers caught a 15-yard penalty.

10:46 —  Penn State got the jolt it needed on an incredible 80-yard touchdown pass from McSorley to redshirt freshman Irvin Charles to cut the deficit to 13-10 Minnesota.

13:45 — The Golden Gophers crossed midfield thanks to a heavy dose of Shannon Brooks, but they were called for an illegal shift and brought out their punter.

15:00 — Penn State couldn’t get much going to start the second half, as Blake Gillikin would come on to punt just over a minute into the quarter.

Second Quarter

1:13 — Minnesota was immediately called for holding, but it was bailed out by a facemask penalty on Grant Haley and Marcus Allen. The Golden Gophers executed the two-minute drill with poise, as they were able to make a 35-yard field goal for the 13-3 lead with :01 left before the half. They chipped the kickoff and Penn State fell on it before heading into the locker room.

2:06 — Penn State had some issues with ball security in the rain on its next drive, as McSorley scooped up a fumble and smartly throw the ball into the turf before being wrapped up for a sack. Gillikin came on to punt when the Nittany Lions couldn’t move the chains.

6:47 — Leidner went to Shannon Brooks on the following drive and the move paid off for Minnesota, as it converted a big fourth and one in Penn State territory. Grant Haley was called for pass interference, allowing the Golden Gophers to reach the red zone. Leidner hit Drew Wolitarsky for a touchdown a few plays later from five yards out to make it 10-3 Minnesota with 2:06 to play before the half.


9:00 — McSorley and the Nittany Lions drove 18 yards over five plays before being forced to punt on fourth and three from their own 38. Jalen Myrick scampered for a few yards on the return to the Minnesota 37-yard line.

12:00 — The Golden Gophers made their way to the Penn State 35-yard line before being forced to punt it into the end zone. The touchback would bring the ball out to the 20 for the Nittany Lions.

15:00 — Penn State made it down to the Minnesota one-yard line but James Franklin elected to go for the chip shot 19-yard field goal from Tyler Davis rather than go for it on fourth and goal. Fans clearly weren’t happy with the conservative call, but the Nittany Lions tied things up at 3-3 with 12:00 to play in the second quarter.

First Quarter

:55 — Trace McSorley gave Beaver Stadium its first big roar of the afternoon by finding DeAndre Thompkins for a huge 53-yard gain. Saquon Barkley picked up eight yards as time expired, bringing up second and two from the Minnesota 13 following the quick break.

5:03 — Leidner and the Golden Gophers got things going as they rumbled deep into Penn State territory before a holding call pushed them back and forced a 37-yard field goal by Emitt Carpenter to make it 3-0 Minnesota with :55 seconds left in the first quarter.

8:17 — The Nittany Lions cruised into Minnesota territory thanks to a 23-yard run by Saquon Barkley down the right sideline. McSorley converted to Mike Gesicki on fourth and five, and following a review in the replay booth, the first down stood. After a beautiful read-option gain of eight yards by McSorley, Barkley couldn’t pick up the first down on fourth and two and Minnesota took over on downs.


10:18 — Minnesota’s offense drove thirty yards to midfield before being forced to punt the ball to John Reid, who called for a fair catch on the Penn State 18-yard line.

13:07 —  Penn State couldn’t get much going on its opening series either, as a handful of completions weren’t enough to keep things moving and punter Blake Gillikin came on to boot it downfield. Minnesota was called for leaping, however, giving the ball back to the Nittany Lions. Despite the new chance, Penn State struggled once more and Gillikin’s punt went into the end zone for a touchback.

15:00 — Minnesota’s opening drive lasted five plays and covered 13 yards, as quarterback Mitch Leidner converted a first down before the Golden Gophers stalled and punted it away to John Reid, who was brought down quickly at the Penn State 11-yard line.



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About the Author

Ethan Kasales

Ethan’s a senior journalism major who grew up in Lemont, a few minutes from campus. When he’s not covering Penn State sports, you can usually find him golfing or teaching snowboarding at Tussey Mountain. Feel free to email him at [email protected]


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