How Ohio State First-Year Starting Quarterbacks Have Fared At Beaver Stadium

No. 4 Ohio State’s offense will take the field at Beaver Stadium under the guidance of a first-year starting quarterback Saturday.

Dwayne Haskins has lit up every defense he’s faced this season, passing for 1,194 yards, 16 touchdowns, and only one interception. The redshirt sophomore has also completed a massive 75.7 percent of his throws so far this season.

Haskins has looked great so far this season, but he also hasn’t played a true road game yet this season. Ohio State played a neutral-site game against TCU in Dallas, but Buckeye fans turned out in droves and made the game at AT&T Stadium for a quasi-home game for Ohio State. How Haskins and the Ohio State offense adapt to the White Out atmosphere at Beaver Stadium will go a long way in deciding the outcome of the game this Saturday.

With that being said, let’s take a look at how the Buckeyes fared the last four times they’ve visited State College with a rookie quarterback.

1999: No. 2 Penn State 23, No. 18 Ohio State 10

If Saturday’s game is similar to the teams’ meeting in 1999 in any way, Nittany Lion fans will have a great night.

The Penn State defense completely stifled Ohio State offense’s, which was led by Steve Bellisari. The Buckeyes were only able to muster a measly 78 yards passing and 65 yards rushing all game. Bellisari’s offensive line didn’t do him many favors, either; he was sacked eight times in the defeat.

2005: No. 16 Penn State 17, No. 6 Ohio State 10

A comeback season for Penn State football was punctuated with a win over the Buckeyes in Happy Valley. In an old-fashioned defensive slugfest, Paul Posluszny, Tamba Hali, and the Penn State defense completely bottled up Ohio State rookie Troy Smith.

Smith was held to only 139 yards passing, and was forced into an interception. The dual threat Smith was unable to make an impact with his legs, as he was held to only 15 yards on the ground.

Hali made one of the most iconic plays in program history with a game-clinching strip sack of Smith late in the fourth quarter.

Smith would go on to win the Heisman Trophy the following season, making the Penn State defense’s performance that night even more impressive.

2007: No. 25 Penn State 17, No. 1 Ohio State 37

Rookie signal caller Todd Boeckman turned in a solid performance, throwing for 253 yards and three touchdowns, but he was helped out by an extremely effective rushing attack that gained more than 200 yards in an emphatic victory.

The Buckeyes would go on to win the Big Ten that season and make an appearance in the National Championship game against LSU, which they lost 38-24.

2014: Penn State 24, No. 13 Ohio State 31

Penn State gave the eventual National Champion all it could handle in a back-and-forth affair at Beaver Stadium. Ohio State escaped with a victory, but not before blowing a 17-point lead and playing two overtime periods.

Quarterback J.T. Barrett made the difference in overtime, running the ball into the end zone twice. Joey Bosa then sealed the victory with a walk-off sack to ensure that the Buckeyes’ national championship hopes were alive and well.

Despite losing the game, the sanction-riddled Penn State defense frustrated Barrett for most of the night. It held the redshirt freshman to only 74 yards passing and forced two interceptions, one of which was returned for a touchdown. The defense also held Barrett in check on the ground, as he only averaged 3.8 yards per carry.

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About the Author

Matthew Fox

Matt is a Senior from Lansdale Pennsylvania majoring in Broadcast Journalism. He loves sports, and is still patiently waiting for the Philadelphia Flyers to win a Stanley Cup. If you would ever like to reach out to Matt you can email him at [email protected].

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