Staff Predictions: No. 6 Penn State vs. Northwestern
After steamrolling Iowa 31-0 in the White Out, Penn State football is heading back to Illinois for the second time in three weeks.
This time around, the Nittany Lions have a date with the Northwestern Wildcats at Ryan Field in Evanston, Illinois, and our staffers unanimously predicted Penn State to depart the Prairie State 5-0 with a massive victory under its belt.
Matt Brown (4-0): Penn State 55, Northwestern 10
Let’s keep this simple. This game will not be close.
I think after last week’s blowout over Iowa, this game will be a piece of cake. Drew Allar will go off and rest the whole fourth quarter while Northwestern scores a pity touchdown late. Any other result should be a concern.
Rico Gore (4-0) Penn State 41, Northwestern 6
Northwestern is struggling pretty badly. However, the Wildcats kept it close against Minnesota and kind of played ball with Rutgers. Nonetheless, Penn State is still going to absolutely dominate on Saturday.
I do, however, expect Northwestern to put some points on the board. This may come after Penn State’s reserves come in, but nonetheless, it will get something on the board (unlike Iowa). I look for Nick Singleton and Kaytron Allen to finally break away on some big runs. They are due, and maybe a terrible team like Northwestern will help the Nittany Lions finally get loose.
Aidan Conrad (4-0): Penn State 38, Northwestern 13
The Nittany Lions won’t have much trouble keeping their momentum rolling on the road this week before the bye week. You should expect more of the same from this team: a run-heavy offense with an efficient passing game as well as a stifling defense that will give the Wildcats trouble.
Brady Miller (4-0): Penn State 37, Northwestern 10
Penn State is coming off its best game of the year: a shutout victory against a ranked Iowa team in the annual White Out game.
The Nittany Lion offense ran more plays than the defense allowed yards last week. A performance like that will be hard to follow up, but that still won’t make this game close.
Brendan Wagner (4-0): Penn State 38, Northwestern 7
Penn State football will take to the road again as it heads to Ryan Field for the second away game of the season. James Franklin hasn’t allowed music during team practices to simulate the quiet atmosphere of the Northwestern Wildcats stadium, so expect a large score from the offense. Practice-like conditions will allow better communication through both sides of the ball, leading to some season-highlighting performances.
Ericka Apolskis (0-0): Penn State 42, Northwestern 14
Honestly, even though I haven’t watched a single Northwestern game this season, I don’t think this is going to be the team Penn State’s 30-point game streak is going to be halted by.
This should be an easy road game for the Nittany Lions before heading into the bye week.
Fernando Martinez (1-0): Penn State 41, Northwestern 10
This game has the word blowout written all over it. The Nittany Lions looked incredible in their annual White Out game against Iowa, and I don’t think they will slow down anytime soon. Northwestern is coming off a comeback win against Minnesota last week, but for three quarters of that game, its offense looked awful.
Penn State’s defense is for real, and I just don’t see how Northwestern’s offense can put up many points against a high-caliber defense like Penn State’s. I think Drew Allar will learn from the mistakes he made in his first road start and play much better against Northwestern. This game will get out of hand by the fourth quarter, and Penn State will get Beau Pribula into his fifth straight game.
Jamie Lynch (1-0): Penn State 49, Northwestern 7
The last time the Nittany Lions and Wildcats faced off, it was a rainy, low-scoring affair that resulted in a 17-7 win for Penn State. The game this weekend will not at all resemble last season’s. Penn State’s defense is one of the best — if not the best — in the nation.
Penn State’s offense has been clicking, and the plethora of short plays has left defenses tired and ineffective. The Nittany Lions lead the nation in time of possession, while Northwestern is almost dead last. The Nittany Lions will get rolling early and maintain their momentum this Saturday before they go into the bye week.
Kyra Birmingham (0-0): Penn State 33, Northwestern 7
Northwestern just doesn’t have the defense to combat Penn State’s ability to score, so the Nittany Lions will continue their 30-point streak this weekend. However, Northwestern proved its ability to overcome all odds last weekend when it defeated Minnesota while overcoming a 21-point deficit going into the fourth quarter. Because of the comeback, I believe Northwestern will put points on the board. Overall, this will be an easy win for the Nittany Lions.
Michael Siroty (0-0): Penn State 41, Northwestern 10
After last week’s performance against Iowa, I’m expecting the offense to keep things moving against a struggling Northwestern team. The Nittany Lions’ defense played like one of, if not the best, defenses in the nation en route to shutting out the Hawkeyes, but I think Northwestern will put something on the board.
Mitchell Corcoran (1-0): Penn State 42, Northwestern 13
A glaring weakness of the Northwestern Wildcats team is its run defense, which has so far allowed 184.5 yards per game. On the other hand, Penn State averages 210 yards per game on the ground. Penn State also rushed for 224 yards against Iowa last week and has allowed an average of 77.5 yards per game rushing.
I expect Penn State to pound the rock in this game, and Northwestern will score a couple of times. Northwestern quarterback Ben Bryant has a lot of experience and seems to be developing a connection with wide receiver Bryce Kirtz. The two connected 10 times for 215 yards and two touchdowns in a 37-34 overtime win over Minnesota last week.
Cooper Cazares (1-0): Penn State 34, Northwestern 14
Penn State’s defense has been one of the best in the nation so far, leaving its opponents smothered and unable to break any big plays. The offense, although often boring to watch, is getting the job done and consistently putting up points. Nothing changes this week, however, the Nittany Lions will suffer from a slow start and allow two touchdowns in the first half. Penn State will pull away in the second half but will fail to cover the spread.
Nolan Wick (4-0): Penn State 49, Northwestern 0
Penn State will start slow, as it usually does. At some point in either the second or third quarter, though, the Nittany Lions will break this game open, and exceed the 30-point threshold in Evanston. Northwestern shouldn’t pose any major problems.
CJ Doebler (4-0): Penn State 41, Northwestern 13
Northwestern is coming off of a big comeback win against Minnesota this week, and is 2-0 at home so far this season. Nevertheless, Penn State will head to Evanston and deliver a beatdown to its fellow feline-themed foes.
I think we see the same slow and methodical offense we’ve seen up to this point, but I’m going to hold out hope for a big run play here and there. The defense, on the other hand, is going to continue its dominant play. I see the starters giving up two field goals before the Wildcats score a garbage-time touchdown on the Penn State reserves.
Joe Lister (4-0): Penn State 49, Northwestern 3
Guys, it’s Northwestern.
Penn State is good at football. Northwestern is not. The math is simple. If this Penn State offense can put up 31 points on a talented Iowa defense, and the defense can shut out the Hawkeyes in longer than two decades, the Nittany Lions will be just fine against Northwestern. Frankly, I’d be disappointed if Penn State won by only 46 points — it’s a better team than that.
Keeley Lamm (4-0): Penn State 52, Northwestern 7
I’ll never root against the Nittany Lions.
Your ad blocker is on.
Please choose an option below.
Purchase a Subscription!
About the Author
The Nittany Lions’ offense had 586 total yards en route to a shutout win to end the season.
The Nittany Lions had 586 offensive yards and five touchdowns against the Spartans.
The Nittany Lions recorded seven sacks and 12 tackles for loss during Friday’s dominant victory.