Nittany Lion Review – Game 8, 2009 – Penn State 35, Michigan 10


For the first time in fourteen years, Penn State emerged from Michigan Stadium victorious after routing the Wolverines by the score of 35-10 on a cold and rainy day in Ann Arbor. The win moves the Lions to 7-1 on the season and 3-1 inside the Big Ten heading into the final four games of the year.


Penn State kicked the ball away to Michigan to begin the game and for the first time all year, the defense gave up a first half touchdown. The Wolverines drove 70 yards down the field and scored on a Brandon Minor one-yard touchdown run to make the score 7-0 maize and blue. Penn State would respond quickly however, and set up a theme for the day as Daryll Clark found Grahan Zug in the endzone just four plays and 68 yards later to tie the game at seven. Before the end of the first quarter, the Lions would add on a 34-yard Colin Wagner field goal to take a lead they would never relinquish.

After a Jeremy Boone punt was downed inside the Michigan 10 yard line, the defense went to work and with the help of two pre-snap penalties on the Wolverines, scored a safety when the ball was snapped through the back of the end zone on third down. After the free kick, Clark would fine Quarless down the seam and 60 yards later Penn State had broken open the game, leading 19-7. Michigan would add on their final points just before halftime, kicking a 23 yard field goal to make is a nine point game.

Out of halftime, Chaz Powell returned the ball to the Wolverine 43 (the 54 yard return was Penn State’s longest of the year thus far), and after another big Clark to Quarless connection, Daryll again found Zug in the corner of the end zone to put Penn State up 25-10 after a missed two-point conversion.

Later in the third quarter, after Michigan fumbled the ball to Penn State on their side of the field, Clark would again find Zug across the middle in the end zone for another score. The three receptions for touchdowns were a career high for Graham, and Penn State was in control 32-10.

In the fourth quarter, Penn State would control the ball for 10:06 before scoring their final three points of the day, a 29-yarder off the boot of Wagner; the losing streak at the Bighouse was finally over as Penn State dominated the Wolverines, 35-10.









Unexpected, yes. Completely shocking, sort of. A very good sign headed into the meat of the schedule, overwhelmingly so. For the second straight week, and year against the Wolverines, the defense absorbed a punch in the mouth early and the offense worked to the third quarter knockout blows. Local boy Zug had a monster day, Clark threw for four touchdowns to break the all-time touchdowns record and Penn State sits at 7-1 heading to the last third of the season. Next week is a slight test against a game Northwestern team that could become a problem if the Lions are caught looking ahead to the showdown with Ohio State in two weeks. After that, games against a weak Indiana team and a Michigan State team who could very well pack up their tents after their tough loss Saturday stand between this year’s squad and a trip to another BCS bowl. The defense is playing incredible, and they are finally getting the help from the offense they lacked in the first parts of this season; if we could just have those last 15 minutes against the Hawkeyes back…


  • Akron: L, 14-28 @ Syracuse
  • Syracuse: W, 28-14 vs. Syracuse
  • Temple: W, 40-24 @ Toledo
  • Iowa: W, 15-13 @ Michigan State
  • Illinois: L, 14-24 @ Purdue
  • Eastern Illinois: W, 28-20 @ Jacksonville State
  • Minnesota: L, 7-38 @ Ohio State
  • Michigan: L, 10-35 vs. Penn State
  • Northwestern: W, 29-78 vs. Indiana
  • Ohio State: W, 38-7 vs. Minnesota
  • Indiana: L, 28-29 @ Northwestern
  • Michigan State: L, 13-15 vs. Iowa
  • Combined opponent’s record: 6-6 for the week, 52-40 for the year (.565)


  • #18 OHIO STATE 38, MINNESOTA 7: The Buckeyes capitalized on four Golden Gopher turnovers to turn a seven-point halftime lead into a 31 point victory Saturday in Columbus. Terrelle Pryor passed for 239 yards and two touchdowns through the air and another on the ground to lead Ohio State over a Minnesota team who has looked inept over the past two weeks. The Buckeyes host New Mexico State next week before traveling to Happy Valley on November 7th.
  • PURDUE 24, ILLINOIS 14: Purdue outgained, outrushed and outpassed the Illini on Saturday afternoon at Ross-Ade Stadium for their second consecutive victory. Most of the Boilermaker’s damage was done on the ground, where they accounted for 220 yard and all three of their touchdowns.
  • NORTHWESTERN 29, INDIANA 28: After Ray Fisher returned a kickoff 93 yards to make the score 28-3 Indiana, few people sitting in Ryan Field thought Northwestern had a chance to win the game. But 26 unanswered points later, after a 19-yard field goal, the Wildcats had erased the biggest deficit in school history to beat the Hoosiers and gain some momentum heading into next week’s game against Penn State.
  • #7 IOWA 15, MICHIGAN STATE 13: The last unbeaten team left in the Big Ten escaped East Lansing with a memorable victory over the Spartans Saturday night. After giving up a touchdown late in the game to trail MSU 13-9, Iowa drove the length of the field and scored a touchdown on a slant route with no time left on the clock to save perfection and a chance at playing for a national championship. The Hawkeyes are a serious threat to go undefeated, as they have three of four games remaining at home and one on the road against an Ohio State team who has struggled at times this season.


  • #12 OREGON 43, WASHINGTON 19: With next week’s home game against Oregon looming on the horizon, many thought that the Ducks would overlook the Huskies and get a tough game this weekend in Seattle; many were also wrong. Oregon rolled over Washington thanks in large part to five-straight touchdown scoring drives in the second and third quarters to put the game out of reach. The Ducks racked up 259 yards rushing and got two scored from both running back LaMichael James and quarterback Jeremiah Masoli in the blowout win.
  • CLEMSON 40, #8 MIAMI 37 (OT): Facing a third and eleven at the Miami 26 yard line, Clemson quarterback Kyle Parker found Jacoby Ford across the middle to the game winning touchdown in the only upset of the day. The win blows open the ACC for Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech, and the loss drops Miami out of the BCS and AP top tens.
  • #1 ALABAMA 12, TENNESSEE 10: After dominating the game for the first 57 minutes, Tennessee scored a late touchdown after the first fumble of Crimson Tide running back Mark Ingram’s career and recovered an onside kick to set up a would have been a game-winning field goal from 44 yards away. But Alabama’s nose guard, 360-pound Terrence Cody came up with his second field goal block of the game to keep the Tide’s undefeated season and national championship hopes alive in a 12-10 thriller over the Volunteers. Alabama has off next week and will host the ninth-ranked LSU Tigers on November 7th.
  • #10 TCU 38, #18 BYU 7: TCU used a strong defensive showing and got three touchdown passes from Andy Dalton to crush Mountain West foe BUY in Provo, Utah Saturday night. The win keeps the Horned Frogs undefeated and vaults them to sixth in the BCS ranking, ahead of Boise State, whom they are likely battling for a BCS game berth.
  • #4 USC 42, OREGON STATE 36: Despite outgaining the Trojans by more than fifty yards, Oregon State fell to USC in Los Angeles by the score of 42-36 in a wile Pac-10 shootout. USC got 2 touchdowns from Allen Bradford on the ground, two from Matt Barkley through the air and one from Damian Williams on a punt return in the fourth quarter which proved to be the difference in the game.


  • 1. FLORIDA (30)
  • 2. ALABAMA (23)
  • 3. TEXAS (7)
  • 4. USC
  • 7. IOWA
  • 8. TCU
  • 9. LSU
  • 10. OREGON
  • 12. PENN STATE
  • 17. OHIO STATE


  • 1. FLORIDA
  • 2. ALABAMA
  • 3. TEXAS
  • 4. IOWA
  • 5. USC
  • 6. TCU
  • 9. LSU
  • 10. OREGON
  • 12. PENN STATE
  • 17. OHIO STATE


  • BCS NAT’L CHAMP GAME: Alabama vs. Texas
  • ORANGE BOWL: Cincinnati vs. Georgia Tech
  • FIESTA BOWL: Oregon vs. TCU
  • SUGAL BOWL: Florida vs. Penn State
  • ROSE BOWL: Iowa vs. USC
  • If Penn State does not get selected for a BCS berth, they would end up in the Capital One Bowl.


Check back with us on Thursday as we preview Penn State’s next game, a late Saturday afternoon contest against the Northwestern Wildcats in Evanston.

And remember, we are six days away from the beginning of Ohio State Hate Week 2009, which starts Sunday.


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