Penn State Nittany Lions vs. Northwestern Wildcats
For the second time in two seasons, the Northwestern game appears to be a turning point for the Nittany Lions. Last year, the Lions, especially QB Mike Robinson, played a sloppy game, yet somehow overcame the Wildcats. After that, they rolled through the Big11Ten schedule (for the most part) and to the #3 ranking.
Penn State Gameday Central – Intercollegiate Athletics
Penn State kept it close, but was not agressive enough around the goal line and fell at #1 Ohio State. Recap
THIS WEEK’S OPPONENT: NORTHWESTERN WILDCATS
Northwestern lost their head coach, Randy Walker, over the summer to a heart attack. Their new coach, Pat Fitzgerald, was a star there in the mid-90s and was being groomed to take over for Walker in a few years. Fitzgerald was coached by current Lions linebacker coach Ron Vanderlinden, then assistant head coach, at Northwestern.
So far, the Wildcats are 2-2 with loses to Nevada and New Hampshire, the #1 team in I-AA. They beat Miami, Walker’s alma mater, in an emotional season opener.
NEW NO RANKING
The loss at OSU pushed Penn State into the “others recieving votes” category. It could be weeks before they return to the top 25.
Carroll H. Cook (’54 Pitt) had nothing to say about Penn State. Nothing. A shut out. Goose egg. Nil.
The contest is being televised by ABC at 3:30 p.m. some of the nation, but not WJLA-TV 7 in Washington. Coverage Map
State College-based Accuweather says the high will be 60°F, but it will feel like 56°F, with clouds and sun. Some light rain may show up later in the day. Other than the rain, it looks like perfect football weather.
I’m hosting a tailgate in either lot 12 or 13. Look for the Yurasko flag.
This is a big game for the Nittany Lions and I think they will respond. Last year’s Northwestern game was the turning point and this year will be, too. A loss this weekend pretty much ends the season, while a victory keeps it going.
There is no way that the Wildcats can keep up with the Nittany Lions. I expect Penn State to establish the run and take more shots downfield. Getting Anthony Morelli comfortable is the #1 priority in my mind. Wideouts Derrick Williams, Deon Butler, and A.J. Wallace all need more touches on Saturday.
Defensively, Penn State will be fine, the unit is really starting to come together, especially CB Justin King.
I expect Penn State to win 30-17, not an overwhelming victory, but a victory nonetheless.
Go STATE, beat Wildcats!