Penn State-Ohio State Preview Capsule


Penn State (5-1, 2-0 Big Ten) at Ohio State (6-0, 2-0) 8 p.m. (ABC).

Line: Ohio State by 17.

Series Record: Ohio State leads 16-13.


Co-leadership of the East Division. Four teams enter Saturday with 2-0 marks. The other two, Michigan and Michigan State, also play each other. The top-ranked Buckeyes face their biggest challenge to date as Penn State has won five straight after an opening loss to Temple. Two years ago in Columbus, the Buckeyes won 63-14 but last season needed double-overtime to defeat the Nittany Lions 31-24 at in State College, Pennsylvania.


Penn State DE Carl Nassib against Ohio State LT Taylor Decker. The Nittany Lions lead the Big Ten with 4.1 sacks per game and Nassib is the national leader with 10 sacks for minus-75 yards and he’s third with 12 tackles for losses. Decker, a projected first-round pick in the 2016 NFL draft, goes against All-American DE Joey Bosa every day in practice so he should be prepared for Nassib.


Penn State: QB Christian Hackenberg is as good as his offensive line. When he has protection he can sit in the pocket and pick apart a secondary. Hackenberg has passed for 1,086 yards with seven touchdowns and two interceptions but the offense is inconsistent.

Ohio State: Backup QB J.T. Barrett now takes over in the red zone for Cardale Jones. Barrett in the last game against Maryland engineered five TDs in five tries, scoring three on runs.


The Penn State defense is 10th nationally in total yards allowed (275.7 per game) and 11th in fewest points yielded (14.3). . Ohio State K Jack Willoughby’s longest field goal is 31 yards and he has missed all three attempts from beyond the 40. He could be replaced by Sean Nuernberger, who handled the placekicking duties last season. . Ohio State will wear all-black uniforms for the first time.

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