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Penn State Football Ranked No. 12 In ESPN’s Preseason FPI Rankings

ESPN has an optimistic outlook on Penn State football heading into the 2022 season.

On Thursday, the Nittany Lions came in at No. 12 on ESPN’s preseason college football Football Power Index (FPI) rankings behind notable rivals such as Pitt, Michigan, and Ohio State.

The FPI rankings aim to measure team strength and are meant to be the best predictor of a team’s performance. ESPN’s index uses 20,000 simulations of the season using FPI, results to date, and the remaining schedule to find the team’s true strength.

Despite losing stars on both sides of the ball like Jahan Dotson and Jaquan Brisker, James Franklin’s squad moves up five spots from the end of the 2021 season. The Nittany Lions wrapped things up with a disappointing 7-6 record and a frustrating Outback Bowl loss to Arkansas.

The FPI rankings project Penn State will finish with an estimated record of 8.3-3.8, along with a 4.3% chance to win the conference, 3.8% chance to make the playoffs, and only a 0.2% chance to win the national championship. Additionally, with trips to Auburn and Michigan, the index ranks Penn State’s strength of schedule 23rd-hardest in the nation.

The Big Ten has the second-most teams in the FPI rankings’ top 25 with five teams: Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State, Michigan State, and Wisconsin. The SEC leads with nine programs in the rankings.

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About the Author

Frankie Marzano

Frankie is a senior accounting and economics major from Long Island, NY. You can probably recognize him as the typical Italian-American with slicked back black hair. He is an avid fan of the New York Rangers and Mets, along with every Penn State Athletics team. Follow him on Twitter @frankiemarzano for obnoxious amounts of Rangers and Penn State content or email him at [email protected]

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