Penn State Football Aiming To Maintain Historical Dominance Over Indiana
Although both Penn State and Indiana began playing football in 1887, it took 106 years until Penn State joined the Big Ten Conference to play the Hoosiers for the first time.
The two schools have played 26 times since 1993,
Since 1993, the two schools have played 26 times, and Penn State holds a 24-2 record. This is the 17th straight year that Penn State and Indiana will battle each other.
The Nittany Lions hold an all-time record of 12-0 against the Hoosiers in Happy Valley, while the group is 11-2 from Bloomington.
The series was completely in favor of the Nittany Lions right from the start. Penn State won the first 16 matchups by an average of almost 17 points. The largest win along this span of games was in 2003 when the Nittany Lions slaughtered the Hoosiers by a score of 52-7.
Penn State seemed to handle business with Indiana each year regardless of how successful the team was to that point. This was until 2013.
Penn State trailed Indiana 13-7 at halftime before wide receiver Allen Robinson caught a 26-yard touchdown pass from true freshman quarterback Christian Hackenberg. The Nittany Lions trailed again after the third quarter by a score of 21-17, before getting outscored 23-7 in the final quarter. The final score was 44-24.
The Nittany Lions got back on track after that loss to win the next six against Indiana, leading into the 2020 matchup.
The 2020 season called for all types of chaos. With no fans in attendance, there was a strange aura blooming in Bloomington in the Hoosiers’ season-opener against No. 7 Penn State.
The game started with tight end Pat Freiermuth receiving a two-yard touchdown from quarterback Sean Clifford to give the Nittany Lions a 7-0 lead. After a second quarter that was all Indiana, resulting in a field goal and two Stevie Scott rushing touchdowns, the Hoosiers led 17-7 at the half.
Clifford dominated the second half, rushing for a 35-yard touchdown at the conclusion of the third quarter and finding Jahan Dotson for a 60-yard pass in the fourth quarter to regain a 21-20 lead. Penn State running back Devyn Ford added a touchdown of his own with under two minutes to play and seemed to put an exclamation point on a Nittany Lion victory.
However, former Indiana quarterback Michael Penix Jr. had other plans. He ran for a one-yard touchdown, along with a two-point conversion to send the game to overtime.
Penn State answered quickly with a nine-yard touchdown from wide receiver Parker Washington, and the team ultimately decided to kick an extra point to go out to a 35-28 lead. In just five plays, Penix threw a nine-yard touchdown of his own. Instead of kicking the extra point to retie the game, Indiana attempted a two-point conversion to win the game.
Penix dove and stretched the ball toward the pylon, and in a very controversial review, it was deemed successful. The Hoosiers knocked off the Nittany Lions by a final score of 36-35.
Since that game, Penn State has won two straight challenges, including a 45-21 victory just a year ago.
Penn State will enter the game trying to get back on track after suffering its first loss of the season to Ohio State. Indiana comes into this game winless in the Big Ten and a 2-5 record overall. The Hoosiers haven’t won on the road, while the Nittany Lions have not lost at home.
The 27th meeting between the pair of teams is slated for noon on Saturday, October 28, in Beaver Stadium.
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About the Author
When paired with the Thespian Society by Penn State THON, the world changed for Theresa Illicete.
In their first overtime play of the season, the Lady Lions fell just short of a conference upset.
The Nittany Lions collected four pins and four other bonus point victories.