No. 7 Penn State Shuts Out No. 24 Iowa In 31-0 White Out Rout
No. 7 Penn State (4-0 overall, 2-0 Big Ten) defeated No. 24 Iowa (3-1 overall, 0-1 Big Ten) 31-0 Saturday night in the Nittany Lions’ annual White Out at Beaver Stadium.
Both offenses had trouble moving the ball in the first half, but Penn State headed into the locker room up 10-0. The Nittany Lions exceeded their first-half point total in the third quarter, with Drew Allar throwing two touchdowns. Penn State pretty much had its way the rest of the night, cruising to a 31-0 White Out victory.
How It Happened
Penn State won the coin toss and deferred to the second half. In front of a deafening crowd, Iowa quarterback Cade McNamara handed the ball to Leshon Williams in the game’s first play for a three-yard gain. After an incomplete pass brought up 3rd-and-7, McNamara found Erick All for a 20-yard gain. Williams gained one yard on the next play, then McNamara threw two incomplete passes to end the drive.
After Tory Taylor’s punt put Penn State at its own six-yard line, Kaytron Allen lost two yards on the first play. The Nittany Lions lost two more yards to make it 3rd-and-14 at their own one-yard line and didn’t get enough yardage to gain a fresh set of downs.
Next, the Hawkeyes set up shop at the Nittany Lions’ 48-yard line. McNamara rushed 18 yards, and then Williams gained another five. Iowa’s false start erased the gain on the next play, and then Kirk Ferentz called a timeout. McNamara tossed it to All, who fumbled the ball at the 18-yard line. Jaylen Reed forced the fumble, and Curtis Jacobs recovered it.
Drew Allar completed an eight-yard pass to Theo Johnson, and the duo connected on the next play for a 13-yard gain. Allen rushed for a five-yard gain but then lost three to set up 3rd-and-7. Liam Clifford made a six-yard reception to set up 4th-and-1, and Allar powered his way through the defensive line to give the Nittany Lions a fresh set of downs. Despite the drive lasting 12 more plays, which consisted mostly of short gains by Allen, Penn State didn’t find the end zone, and Alex Felkins’ 46-yard field goal attempt was successful to make it 3-0 with 1:35 remaining in the opening quarter.
On the next drive, McNamara tossed a pass to Nico Ragaini to bring up 2nd-and-6, and Kamari Moulton followed it up with a three-yard gain to make it 3rd-and-3. Under intense pressure, McNamara was forced to throw out of bounds to avoid being sacked, which brought up 4th-and-3 and ended the drive.
The low gains continued, as Nick Singleton rushed for two yards. Allar then tossed it to Lambert-Smith, who danced around Penn State territory under pressure after unsuccessfully trying to throw a pass. The pass to Lambert-Smith was ruled incomplete, which saved Penn State from a 12-yard loss. However, Penn State once again had to punt on 4th-and-8.
Then, the punt was recovered by Jacobs after it hit Brenden Deasfernandes, and Penn State regained possession at Iowa’s 39-yard line. Before anyone noticed, however, it was already 4th-and-1. Allar snuck the ball past the line to give the offense another set of downs, then tossed it to Singleton who had a nine-yard gain before being pushed out of bounds. After consecutive rushes by Singleton made it 2nd-and-8, Allar found Lambert-Smith for a four-yard gain to bring up 3rd-and-4, but Singleton’s three-yard rush on the next play made it 4th-and-1. Staying on the field for fourth down again, Allar found tight end Khalil Dinkins for a nine-yard touchdown pass with 9:17 left in the second quarter to make it 10-0 Penn State.
End. Zone. pic.twitter.com/MChTkl9mmB— Onward State (@OnwardState) September 24, 2023
As the crowd noise intensified again, Iowa began the drive at its own 25-yard line. McNamara faced pressure once again but completed a three-yard pass to All. McNamara’s incomplete pass brought up 3rd-and-7, and another incomplete pass, which Reed nearly intercepted, handed the Hawkeyes another three-and-out.
Starting at his own 21-yard line, a seven-yard and three-yard gain from Allen gave Penn State a first down. Allar threw two incompletions but then found Clifford for an 11-yard pass to give the offense another first down. The drive stalled as Penn State failed to achieve another first down, and had to punt the ball away.
The Hawkeyes had another three-and-out, as two minimal-gain runs and an incomplete pass gave the ball to Penn State. Kaden Saunders muffed the punt, but he recovered it at Penn State’s 13-yard line. However, two unsuccessful runs and an incomplete pass sealed another three-and-out for Penn State.
Iowa regained possession at its own 43-yard line with 90 seconds to go in the first half. McNamara tossed it to Williams, who gained three yards. Dani Dennis-Sutton batted the ball down as McNamara dropped back, which brought up 3rd-and-7. After facing intense pressure throughout the game, McNamara was finally sacked by Adisa Isaac for a nine-yard loss to end the drive.
Taylor’s punt landed all the way at Penn State’s one-yard line. Allen and Allar rushed for a combined four yards, and ran the clock down. Penn State led 10-0 at the half.
After Allar’s four-yard pass to Johnson to open the second half, Singleton ripped a 19-yard gain, the crowd becoming increasingly excited after each yard gained. Lambert-Smith followed that up with an eight-yard gain two plays later for another first down, and Penn State appeared to be moving the ball efficiently for the first time of the night. This continued as Allen rushed for a nine-yard gain two plays later for yet another first down, and a 14-yard pass to Lambert-Smith had Penn State at the three-yard line, knocking on the end zone’s door. Three plays later, Allar scrambled towards the right side, then found Tyler Warren wide-open on the opposite side of the end zone to make it 17-0 with 8:20 left in the third quarter.
Despite Penn State now leading by a sizeable margin, the Beaver Stadium faithful showed no mercy. It was deafening on Iowa’s proceeding drive, which ended up being another three-and-out. McNamara fumbled on third down, and barely recovered it amid an onslaught of Nittany Lions.
Then, Mike Yurcich’s offense continued to find its stride. Allen dominated the 13-play drive with seven carries for 28 yards. However, it culminated in a seven-yard touchdown pass, as Allar connected with Warren in the end zone for the second time of the game to make it 24-0 with one minute left in the third quarter.
The troubles continued for the Hawkeyes, though. McNamara fumbled the ball on the first play during a sack, which Chop Robinson recovered deep in Iowa territory. Penn State set up shop at the 19-yard line, but didn’t score initially. The Hawkeyes roughed Felkins on a field goal attempt, which gave Penn State a fresh set of downs. Allar tossed a touchdown pass high to Lambert-Smith on the next play, who managed to make the catch despite facing difficult coverage to make it 31-0 with 12:19 left in the game.
After another Hawkeye three-and-out, Beau Pribula replaced Allar at quarterback with 10 minutes left in the fourth quarter. Pribula immediately put his speed on display, blazing down the field for an 18-yard gain, then an 11-yard gain four plays later. The drive stalled, however, and Felkins’ field goal attempt was no good.
Iowa fumbled the ball twice on the next drive. Dominic DeLuca forced the first one, which was recovered by All, but the Hawkeyes made the same mistake on the next play. This time, Zuriah Fisher recovered the fumble, and the Nittany Lions ultimately ticked the clock down on the next drive to end the game, winning 31-0 to improve to 4-0.
- The defense was once again lights-out. Manny Diaz’s unit held Iowa scoreless with just 76 total yards, and additionally had four turnovers.
- Curtis Jacobs was all over the place with two fumble recoveries. He became the first Nittany Lion to do so in a single game since 1991.
- Penn State’s ground game thrived amid rainy conditions. Although all touchdowns were via the air, the Nittany Lions rushed for 215 yards, averaging 3.8 yards per carry.
- The tight ends also had a significant impact on the game. Theo Johnson’s 42 receiving yards were second of all players, Tyler Warren scored two touchdowns, and Khalil Dinkins scored one.
Penn State returns to the state of Illinois for a matchup against Northwestern at noon on Saturday, September 30, at Ryan Field in Evanston, Illinois. The game will be televised on Big Ten Network.
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About the Author
Kotelnicki’s hiring was first reported Thursday afternoon.
Most of our staffers have Penn State playing in the Peach Bowl for the first time in program history.
Kotelnicki has everything he needs to succeed at Penn State. Can he break the Nittany Lions’ trend of flops at the offensive coordinator position?