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Staff Predictions: No. 7 Penn State vs. No. 24 Iowa

Welcome to the greatest show in college football, folks.

This week, No. 7 Penn State will take on No. 24 Iowa in the White Out at Beaver Stadium at 7:30 on Saturday, September 23.

Both teams are undefeated heading into the game, and our staffers are confident the Nittany Lions will prevail in their first test against a ranked opponent.

Matt Brown (3-0): Penn State 33, Iowa 13

It’s the White Out, one of the biggest games of the year for the Nittany Lions (even though it’s not against the right home opponent). Despite a concerning game against the Illini last weekend, I think the perfect way to bounce back is a game in front of 110,000 of the best fans in the world.

Iowa has a very good defense, however, I don’t think that matters. Penn State is ready to prove that it’s a legit threat to the College Football Playoff, and a big win over the No. 24-ranked Hawkeyes is just what it needs. The Nittany Lions will win big.

Rico Gore (3-0): Penn State 20, Iowa 3

Unfortunately, Penn State is going to lose its 30-point game streak.

Iowa’s defense is good. Really good. However, Iowa’s offense is terrible. Here’s the kicker though. Penn State’s defense is very good. When you mix a terrible offense and a great defense, the offense isn’t going to score much. Penn State isn’t going to score as much as it typically does, but make no mistake, Penn State is still going to put a few in the end zone.

Penn State covers because great teams cover.

Dennis Wilkins (0-0): Penn State 31, Iowa 10

Penn State quarterback Drew Allar proved in week one that he can handle the bright lights of Happy Valley. Offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich will open up the playbook for Allar and Co. after calling a fairly conservative trio of games. Iowa’s offense struggles to move the ball throughout and a garbage-time touchdown saves this from looking far worse on paper for the Hawkeyes.

Brendan Wagner (3-0): Penn State 35, Iowa 17

Iowa’s lack of a Big Ten-caliber offense will struggle to find footing in the loud and distracting White Out atmosphere. Watch for Allar to have a huge game under the lights, supplemented by a pair of touchdowns from the duo of Nick Singleton and Kayton Allen.

Mitchell Corcoran (0-0): Penn State 24, Iowa 10

Expect an ugly, gritty, Big Ten showdown this Saturday. Both defenses are impressive, averaging less than 13 points per game and under 300 total yards allowed per game. Combine this with potential rain in the forecast and you will get a sloppy, low-scoring, defensive game.

Aidan Conrad (3-0): Penn State 44, Iowa 7

Ah, the White Out. The week that every Penn State and college football fan loves has finally returned. The Nittany Lions have a chance to get revenge on the Iowa Hawkeyes after suffering a loss back in 2021.

This game has been circled in red ink for a long time, and for good reason. I expect the Nittany Lions to stomp on the Hawkeyes on Saturday night. Expect to see 110,000 fans witness an all-time classic of a White Out game.

Brady Miller (3-0): Penn State 27, Iowa 20

The Penn State offense looked sluggish last week at Illinois, but this isn’t one of the scary Iowa defenses we’ve become accustomed to.

Although Iowa quarterback Cade McNamara has beaten the Nittany Lions before while at Michigan, he won’t be able to do it again.

Penn State wins the annual White Out in a close, defensive battle.

Jamie Lynch (0-0): Penn State 34, Iowa 13

Iowa football, welcome to the greatest show in college sports. A raucous White Out crowd will shut down the Hawkeye offense and ex-Michigan quarterback Cade McNamara on Saturday night. The forecast indicates that it could be a wet one in Happy Valley, so the Penn State defense will hope to capitalize by dominating the turnover battle. With revenge on their mind, the Nittany Lions will feed off the prime-time energy and cruise over the 30-point threshold for the 11th consecutive week.

Cooper Cazares (0-0): Penn State 35, Iowa 17

Penn State will emerge victorious from Saturday’s game against a decent Iowa team. The difference in talent is most evident in the two squad’s ground game. Iowa doesn’t have the defense to defend against the running back tandem of Nick Singleton and Kaytron Allen. Both Singleton and Allen will have 100 rushing yards and a touchdown Saturday night. The Hawkeyes will keep it close at first, but similar to last week’s game against Illinois, Penn State will pull away late and secure a 4-0 start to its campaign.

Fernando Martinez (0-0): Penn State 27, Iowa 20

I think this game will be closer than most folks think. Iowa’s defense is really good, and the White Out will be a difficult test for Drew Allar, who struggled against Illinois. It will be interesting to see how Allar plays against a big-caliber defense like Iowa’s. I expect Allar to feel nervous at the beginning of the game, but I think he will settle down in the second half and find a way to win the game.

Also, Penn State’s defense has a lot of momentum after forcing five turnovers against Illinois, so I think that momentum will carry over into this game. The White Out atmosphere will be a large factor, and I think it will be too much for Iowa to handle. I just can’t see the Nittany Lions losing the White Out.  

Alshine Mondesir (0-0): Penn State 35, Iowa 23

Penn State has scored over 30 points in each of its last 10 games, and this game will be no different. I predict a breakout game where Nick Singleton and Drew Allar will each score two touchdowns apiece. Complementing the offensive production, I think the defense will score a touchdown as well.

Nolan Wick (3-0): Penn State 31, Iowa 14

Look at it this way: Iowa is that one pain-in-the-ass relative you need to see every once in a while. You don’t enjoy doing it, but if you keep your act together in their presence, it’ll all be OK, despite them pushing your buttons. 

In other words, Iowa is a pesky, talented team that usually plays well against Penn State and will steal a victory if you let it. The Nittany Lions are better on paper, and this year’s White Out will be a vintage Big Ten matchup that’ll be won on the ground given the weather forecast. With that said, Penn State’s defense has been very effective at stopping the run recently, and everyone knows how good its backfield can be. I also expect James Franklin’s team to be more disciplined after taking seven penalties in the last two games, which arguably cost several points against Illinois.

The ranked Hawkeyes will be challenging, but the Nittany Lions should prevail in an electric White Out atmosphere. 

CJ Doebler (3-0): Penn State 31, Iowa 16

Drew Allar is primed to bounce back after his less-than-stellar outing against Illinois. Iowa’s defense is one of the best that the Nittany Lions will see this year, and the offensive line has to play to the level it’s capable of.

The defense, on the other hand, should have a relatively easy day. Iowa is without its top tight end and its top two running backs for the matchup, and given that Cade McNamara hasn’t been all that impressive through three games, all signs point to Penn State’s defense having another field day this week. 

Joe Lister (3-0): Penn State 28, Iowa 3

I’m going to be a cynic here.

Penn State has gone 10 straight games scoring 30 or more points. I think that streak ends against Iowa. Don’t get me wrong, I think Penn State has this game in its pocket. Between a White Out atmosphere and the fact that the Nittany Lions are simply the better team, Penn State’s a clear victor. But Iowa has always gotten by from its defense, and that defense might just end the Nittany Lions’ streak. Normally, I talk about covering the spread, but this week, Penn State will really win if it puts up 30 points on the Hawkeye defense.

With rain in the forecast, this game could admittedly end up being tighter than most expect, but that won’t become clear until game time.

Keeley Lamm (3-0): Penn State 27, Iowa 13

I’ll never bet against the Nittany Lions.

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About the Author

Staff

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