Five reasons the Ohio State football program will get it’s biggest win of 2018, on the road in Happy Valley against Penny State.
As impressive as the No.4-ranked Ohio State football team has been this September, they’ll need to step it up another notch this weekend. The Buckeyes will be facing off against top divisional opponent Penn State on the road Saturday. The No. 9 ranked Nittany Lions are undefeated.
Both programs had a colorful history as it seems like it’s a slug fest no matter how each team looks coming into the matchup. In recent history, these two teams have been great coming into the clash and the ensuing battles didn’t disappoint. This season should be no different as each side comes into this game with an undefeated record and top ten in the national standings.
The Nittany Lions have had quite the rise to success in the past few years as their team quality and overall standing has been impressive. Before 2016, they had not accrued over 10 wins in a season. They had decent teams before that made things interesting with the Buckeyes in the divisional matchups but were never serious contenders. The Lions’ rise can be attributed to the hiring of James Franklin in 2014. He has built this team well over the years and brought them back to relevancy.
The last two seasons of this match up alone have unveiled some of the most entertaining games in the entire college football landscape. In 2016, the Nittany Lions pulled out the win at State College over the Buckeyes in electric fashion. Penn State capitalized on a blocked punt returned for a touchdown.
An epic showdown between these two went down last season in Columbus as both sides traded scoring until the very end. The Buckeyes had to overcome a 35-20 deficit in the fourth quarter to win that game.
Now, the Buckeyes are looking their best on offense and have the best defensive front in the nation. The Buckeyes currently sit at second in the nation in total offense and 22nd in total defense. Meanwhile, the Nittany Lions are eleventh in total offense and 36th in total defense.
The series between these two programs has been close through history as the Buckeyes lead it with 18 wins to the Nittany Lions’ 14.
The Lions have home field advantage in this one where they’ve won six of those match ups including the last time the Buckeyes were there. In fact, the Nittany Lions haven’t lost a game at home since 2015. This will be a huge game with even bigger implications and it will be going down in prime time on Saturday night.