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VIDEO: Postgame Player Interviews - Indiana

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Head into the winning locker room to hear from several Nittany Lions, including Kyle Carter, Christian Hackenberg, DaeSean Hamilton, Austin Johnson, Jordan Lucas and Andrew Nelson following the 29-7 victory over Indiana.

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2015 Gameday Live - Penn State vs. Indiana

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Welcome to live, interactive coverage of the 2015 Penn State football season. The Nittany Lions will meet Indiana on Homecoming inside Beaver Stadium. Follow along for live updates from gameday.

Live Blog 2015 Gameday Live - Penn State vs. Indiana

2015 Photo Blog - Penn State vs. Indiana

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Welcome to live coverage of the 2015 Penn State football season. The Nittany Lions will meet Indiana on Homecoming inside Beaver Stadium. Follow along for photos from gameday.


2015 Gameday - Nittany Lions Host Indiana on Homecoming

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Gameday Central | Game Notes | Game Blog | Press Conference Roundup | Lions in NFL

Coach Franklin Wednesday | Coach Rahne Q&A | Notebook | Looking Back: OSU 2005

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Riding a four-game winning streak, Penn State will host Indiana on Saturday in the 96th Homecoming game.

11386314.jpegFinishing a string five consecutive home games, the Nittany Lions (4-1, 1-0) and Hoosiers (1-3) will square off in a 12 p.m. kick in Beaver Stadium. The game will air live on ESPN.

"We are excited to close out five straight weeks at home with Homecoming," said Franklin. "We really appreciate the support of the students and especially all of the alums who will be coming back to Happy Valley this weekend from all over the country."

Behind a career day from linebacker Jason Cabinda, the Nittany Lion defense again shined in a 20-14 win over Army last week. The true sophomore linebacker made a career-high 14 tackles, recorded the first two sacks of his career and forced a fumble. Senior defensive end Carl Nassib, who remains among the nation's leaders in sacks and tackles for loss, tallied a sack for the fifth-straight game to open the season.

Offensively, redshirt freshman Nick Scott and sophomore Mike Gesicki each visited the end zone for the first time in the Blue and White. Gesicki's 33-yard catch and run in the third quarter capped off a three-play 91-yard drive, which included a 49-yard toss from quarterback Christian Hackenberg to wide receiver Chris Godwin.

Indiana enters Saturday's game after playing top-ranked Ohio State to the wire in Bloomington last week. The Hoosiers went toe-to-toe with the Buckeyes for 60 minutes, falling just shy in a 34-27 Ohio State victory. Indiana tallied more than 400 yards of total offense against Ohio State, including 176 on the ground. The Hoosiers enter the game with a 4-1 overall record following victories over Southern Illinois (48-47), Florida International (36-22), Western Kentucky (38-35) and Wake Forest (31-24) to open the season.

Penn State and Indiana will meet for the 19th time on Saturday, with all of the meetings coming since the Nittany Lions joined the Big Ten Conference in 1993. Penn State is 17-1 all-time against the Hoosiers and 8-0 in games played at Beaver Stadium.

The Alumni Blue Band will be featured as they join the Blue Band performance at halftime of Saturday's Homecoming game. The Homecoming court will parade onto the field and the 2015-16 King and Queen will be announced during halftime. The annual Homecoming Parade will be held on campus and downtown State College on Friday evening.

Following the Indiana game, Penn State will head on the road for two straight games, traveling to Ohio State on Oct. 17 and M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore to face Maryland on Oct. 24. The Lions return home to Beaver Stadium on Oct. 31 for a matchup against Illinois.

Welcome to the gameday preview for week six - Penn State vs. Indiana.

Pregame Reading:
What to Watch For - Penn State
11386298.jpeg1. Being on the positive side of turnover margin is always a recipe for success. Arguably, it's been Penn State's biggest key during a 4-1 start to the season. The math is simple. When you force more turnovers than you commit, the offense has more opportunities to score. It's one of few statistics on the season report that illustrates the value in playing complementary football. Penn State is ranked No. 8 in the nation with a plus-1.60 turnover margin. Additionally, the Nittany Lions have scored 34 points off of turnovers this season, while opponents have scored 14.

"I think that's been critical to our success," said Franklin. "We talked a few weeks ago about playing a style of play that was going to allow us to be successful, and we've done that. I think the turnovers have been huge, probably, in my opinion, I don't think it's gotten enough attention as it should, especially the conditions of the games that we have played in."

2. The Penn State linebacker corps has been a bit under the radar during the first five games of the season. The unit features the team's top two tacklers in Jason Cabinda (37) and Troy Reeder (27), and it's a group that has consistently improved with each passing week. Despite absences from Nyeem Wartman-White and Brandon Bell, the Lions have executed the "next man up" mantra at a high level. Von Walker, Manny Bowen and Jake Cooper have all played a role in Penn State's success on defense. The Nittany Lions enter the week ranked in the top 18 in total defense and scoring defense.

3. Coach Franklin pointed to the passing game as an area to watch for during the one-on-one preview with GoPSUsports.com. During the past two games, the Nittany Lions have tallied eight passing plays of 20 or more yards, including a season-long 49-yard connection between Christian Hackenberg and Chris Godwin last week. Franklin mentioned the emphasis on contested catches when the ball is thrown downfield. Godwin has illustrated that he has the tools to be a threat every time the ball is delivered down the field. Penn State will be looking for consistency across the board in its passing game. And that begins with good protection up front.

What to Watch For - Indiana
1. Indiana senior quarterback Nate Sudfeld is one of the Big Ten's most talented signal-callers. A starter in three seasons, Sudfeld is among the conference's top statistical passers in 2015. He is first in yards per attempt, second in passing yards, passing yards per game and total offense. Despite missing the latter stages of Indiana's narrow setback to Ohio State, Sudfeld is 87-of-147 for 1,277 yards with seven touchdowns and one interception this season. Ricky Jones is Indiana's leading receiver with 21 catches for 446 yards and three touchdowns.

2. Junior running back Jordan Howard has been impressive for the Hoosiers when he has been on the field. The junior, who played at UAB last season, has 709 yards on 125 carries and has scored four touchdowns. Howards is the nation's active leader in rushing since the start of 2013 with 3,177 yards. He has 10 games with 150 yards or more.

3. Junior middle linebacker T.J. Simmons is the leader of Indiana's 3-4 defense. A starter in 28 of Indiana's last 29 games, Simmons is currently tied for the team lead with 34 tackles. He has made 23 solo stops in 2015, as well. Additionally, Indiana's D-Line has been a key to Indiana's defensive success. The unit has accounted for eight of the team's 12 sacks. Defensive end Nick Mangieri leads the team with 5.0 sacks.

The Final Word:
Saturday will be a reunion for the thousands of alums who will visit Happy Valley for the Homecoming game. Penn State's Homecoming history stretches back to 1920 when the Nittany Lions defeated Dartmouth by a score of 14-7. Since 1920, Penn State has hosted a Homecoming game each season, with Saturday marking the 96th consecutive year with a Homecoming game. The Nittany Lions are 68-22-5 in Homecoming games. Penn State has won eight out of the last 10 on Homecoming.

Penn State will be seeking a 5-0 start at home for only the fourth time since 2000. Additionally, Penn State's defense will be looking to continue a streak of holding opponents to 300 total yards or less. The Lions have limited their opponents to 300 or fewer yards in eight consecutive home games. ESPN's live coverage of the Indiana game begins at 12 p.m. with kickoff slated for 12:01 p.m. Beth Mowins (Play-by-Play) and Anthony Becht (Analyst) and Paul Carcaterra (Sideline) will call the game.

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Ten Years Later: Remembering an Epic Night in Beaver Stadium

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Tamba Hali sack - OSU 05.jpgUNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Ten years have passed since an epic night in Penn State lore.

Few environments will ever compare to the one inside Beaver Stadium on Oct. 8, 2005 when the unbeaten and 16th-ranked Nittany Lions battled the sixth-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes in a primetime tilt of Big Ten heavyweights.

Having knocked off Northwestern in dramatic fashion two weeks prior, the Nittany Lions entered the Ohio State game on the heels of a 44-14 rout of Minnesota. The Buckeyes came in with one blemish on their record following a narrow 25-22 setback to eventual national champion Texas.

ESPN College Gameday set the stage outside of Beaver Stadium on what proved to be a special Saturday in Happy Valley.

Chilly, damp conditions under the lights proved to be the perfect setting for a slugfest between two of the conference's best defenses.

The Buckeyes got on the board first with a 30-yard field goal from Josh Huston in the first frame, but the Nittany Lions answered with a big second quarter. Freshman Derrick Williams capped off a nine-play, 74-yard drive with a 13-yard touchdown run on an option play with quarterback Michael Robinson to put the Nittany Lions on top by a score of 7-3.

With capacity crowd of 109,839 in a frenzy, defensive linemen Matthew Rice and Tamba Hali sacked Ohio State quarterback Troy Smith on the first play of the ensuing Buckeye possession. Two plays later, safety Calvin Lowry stepped in front of a Smith pass for an interception before racing to the Ohio State 2.

Robinson then plunged into the end zone to give the Nittany Lions a 14-3 lead. Ohio State answered on the next possession with an 81-yard drive, setting the score at 14-10 heading into the break.

Penn State added a 41-yard field goal from Kevin Kelly on the first drive of the second half to make it 17-10, Nittany Lions.

From there, the tenacious Blue and White defense took over with a spirited performance.

The Buckeyes managed 105 yards in the second half, including just 54 yards and two first downs in the final quarter of play.

It was only fitting on a night dominated by the Nittany Lion defense that the clinching moment came in the form of a sack. With Ohio State driving in the final two minutes of action at the Penn State 45, Hali raced into the backfield, sacked Smith, forced a fumble, and Scott Paxson pounced on the loose ball, which directed the boisterous crowd into a deafening roar.

Hali's senior season was filled with big plays, but none were more iconic than his sack of Smith.

Linebacker Paul Posluszny led stifling effort against an Ohio State offense that came into the game averaging nearly 400 yards per contest. The All-American finished with 14 tackles, two tackles for loss and one sack en route to becoming the first player to earn Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week honors in three consecutive weeks. Fellow linebacker Dan Connor has 12 tackles, while Hali finished with seven tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks. The Buckeyes finished with 230 total yards.

In all, more than 30 players from the two teams that competed that night were selected in the 2006, 2007 and 2008 NFL drafts.

A last-second touchdown in Ann Arbor the very next week was all that stood between the Big Ten and Orange Bowl champions and an undefeated season.

Ten years may have passed, but Oct. 8, 2005 remains as a night Nittany Lion fans that were in attendance or watching at home will never forget.

MRob TD OSU 05.jpg
Calvin Lowry INT OSU 05.jpg

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Indiana Week Q&A - Ricky Rahne

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11385775.jpegUNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The Nittany Lions return to Big Ten play on Saturday with matchup against Indiana at Beaver Stadium (12 p.m. on ESPN).

Leading up to the clash against the Hoosiers, quarterbacks coach Ricky Rahne talked with the media on Thursday to preview the game. Take a look at a Q&A with Coach Rahne.

Q: Where do you think Christian (Hackenberg) has made the biggest strides since last year?
Rahne: "I think there are two things that he's done very well and made big strides with. He's made some great checks in the running game that have really helped us run the ball better, in terms of getting us into good plays and things like that. There have been a couple times where he's checked us into perfect gains and touchdowns and things of that nature. And then the other thing I think he's done very well; he's taking care of the football. That's been a huge point of emphasis and something he's done a great job of doing. It's helped win some games."

Q: Christian has talked about working on his footwork with shorter drops. How has he done with that and why is that important?

Rahne: "I think that is something quarterbacks work on forever. You see every time I watch an NFL game and a guy throws an incomplete pass, you see him look down at his feet, like, man I screwed that up. He's done a nice job with that in terms of working on that. The reason that it's important is because of the timing of some of those quick throws. You have to have your feet set in the right area. You have to have your weight set in the right place so that you can be accurate on those passes. If you are under center, it's one, two three and the ball is out. From the shotgun, you may be throwing it with or without the laces. The feet are the things that are going to make you be as accurate as possible on those passes."

Q: How would you evaluate the team's short passing game in the flat and over the middle? It looks like the timing isn't quite there yet.
Rahne: "It's something that we are continuing to work on. It goes back to the footwork that I discussed in the last question. We just have to make sure that the feet sync up with all of the routes and the consistency of that. I think Christian has done a really good job of working on that. It's just a matter of the wide receivers taking the exact right route, Christian taking the exact right drop and the guys up front that they are setting according to the route. It is a team game on that end of it. I think we have made some progress on some of those things, but we just have to continue working on it."

Q: How does an effective run game impact the way you are able to have a successful passing game?
Rahne: "It's very beneficial because it allows you to get in more manageable situations. I think if you look around the country, no one is really great in third-and-long. That's what defenses are striving to get into. You have all of these great pass rushers. We have Carl Nassib. He loves being in third-and-long. Being able to run the ball puts you in a position where you still have the defense in a run-pass conflict and that is when offenses are going to be most successful. You keep the defenses guessing. You make sure they are playing sound defense and not just teeing off and going after the quarterback. The run game is obviously critical. Christian's ability to read defenses and get us in and out of good plays has been a great asset for us this year and will continue to be so throughout the season."

Q: How important is that dialogue between series on the field to make adjustments and how has Christian grown in that area of making suggestions as he has gotten older?
Rahne: "I think when you get older you start to understand kind of what you are seeing a little better. Not only are you going to have more suggestions, but they are going to be more valid. You can actually think about things (based on what you have previously seen), as opposed to when you are younger and just throwing some stuff out there. His suggestions are great. We talk about a bunch of different stuff on the sideline. We are able to talk through the coverages; what he's seeing and what I'm seeing or what I thought he should have done. Sometimes I'm asking him tendencies of defenses and things like that because it may be hard for me to see that from the sideline. It's good dialogue. We trust each other enough where he can voice his opinion and I can voice mine. At the end, we are just trying to move the ball down the field, score points and win games. I think that process has gotten better this year and helped us make some adjustments."

Q: You guys have looked to throw the ball on the run, how would you evaluate Christian's ability to throw on the move this year?
Rahne: "I think he is throwing the ball fairly well on the move. There have been times where he threw the ball out of bounds on plays to avoid lost-yardage plays. He's done a nice job covering the play. Obviously all quarterbacks miss some passes, but I've been happy with his progress throwing on the move. I think he's done a nice job with that. In general, I've been happy with the way he has worked on his mechanics making sure he has a good athletic base and balance. I'm excited about this week for him to go out there and continue to improve; and our whole offense to go out there and improve and let our wide receivers and tight ends to make plays down the field."

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VIDEO: James Franklin Practice Update - Indiana Week

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Head coach James Franklin addressed the media following Wednesday's practice session at the Lasch Football Complex.

The Nittany Lions will host Indiana on Saturday at 12 p.m. in Beaver Stadium in second Big Ten game of the season. Take a look at the practice update from Indiana week.

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VIDEO: Indiana Week Player Q&A

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - GoPSUsports.com talks with defensive tackle Anthony Zettel during Indiana week.

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2015 Tuesday Press Conference Roundup - Indiana Week

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11381975.jpegVIDEO: Indiana Week Player Q&A | Transcripts - James Franklin | Players

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Head coach James Franklin addressed the media on Tuesday to preview Penn State's Homecoming contest against Indiana.

The Nittany Lions (4-1, 1-0) and Hoosiers (4-1, 0-1) will meet at 12 p.m. (ESPN2) inside Beaver Stadium on Saturday, finishing off a streak of five straight weeks of home football in Happy Valley. Franklin reviewed Penn State's 20-14 win over Army and looked ahead to the second Big Ten game on the schedule.

Another superb outing from the Nittany Lion defense fueled Penn State past Army last week. The Lions had three sacks against the Black Knights, despite Army only dropping back to pass fewer than five times. Penn State's ability to play in the backfield will again be a focal point on Saturday against an Indiana team that has only allowed three sacks thus far in 2015.

"We could improve our tackling. That's an area that we need to do a better job of," said Franklin. "...We have to do a better job of that, but overall doing really good, we're second in the nation with sacks, with 21 sacks, we're third in the nation with tackles for a loss at 46, which I think is going to be really important this week because they've only given up three sacks."

The Nittany Lions have averaged 4.20 sacks per game and accounted for a loss of 186 yards in 2015 thanks to the 21 sacks. Keeping Indiana's offense off balance will be something to watch. Indiana averages 84.4 offensive plays per game.

Turnovers will also play a big role in Saturday's Big Ten tilt. Penn State and Indiana enter the game as two of the best teams in the nation in turnover margin. Indiana is ranked fifth in the nation (+1.80) and Penn State is seventh (+1.60). Taking care of the ball will be a big point of emphasis for both teams, and it's been a big key to success during the first five games. The two teams have lost just five total turnovers this season.

"I think the turnovers have been huge, probably, in my opinion, I don't think it's gotten enough attention as it should, especially the conditions of the games that we have played in," said Franklin. "I think that's been really, really important for us and we've done a good job of that and we have to continue doing that."

Offensively, Penn State wants to be successful limiting mistakes, running the football and making big plays in the passing game when they present themselves. Wide receiver Chris Godwin has been at the forefront of the chunk plays in the passing game down the field. Godwin's ability to make tough plays in traffic can also play a big role in helping the offense on third down.

"We gotta improve on third down. That's gonna be with protection, contested catches, which actually Chris Godwin has done an unbelievable job of," said Franklin. "I know we have had discussions in here about creating separation. You can do one of two things. You can create separation, which is very, very important, we're going to continue working on that, or be able to catch contested catches, and Chris does a great job with that."

Indiana is 4-1 coming into the game. All five of its contests were decided by one touchdown or less. The Hoosiers are no strangers to close games, and Franklin and the staff have taken note of how IU has been successful in crunch time.

"They found a way to win. Last week they played Ohio State very, very well in a closely contested game," Franklin said. "Kevin Wilson in his fifth season. One of the things Kevin has been talking about and stuff that I've read and seen is probably for the first time since they've been there, they are big and physical on both fronts. They feel like they have the depth and the size and the talent that they have been looking for since they got there, and that shows up."

The Nittany Lions will practice in pads on Tuesday and Wednesday before the final game week session on Thursday. Saturday's game will kick at noon on ESPN2.

Press Conference Notes:
- Coach Franklin announced that Nick Scott (Offense), Jason Cabinda (Defense) and Manny Bowen (Special Teams) were the internal players of the week.

- Coach Franklin on safety Troy Apke's impact on defense and special teams...

"I would like to make a big deal out of Troy Apke. Troy took every single snap on defense and every single snap on special teams. As a second year player he is really starting to have a big impact on our team and on our roster, and we're really happy he's with us. I didn't even realize that until we watched the tape and graded everybody, but that's who Troy is. He's said about 12 words since he's been here, and he just goes out and does his job."

- Coach Franklin on defensive end Carl Nassib...

"First of all you look at him, he's an impressive guy in terms of his height, weight, arm length, things like that, his physical testing numbers have been good, I wouldn't say freakish but they have been really good. But really what probably makes Carl special is he's somewhat odd. He's a different guy. I talk about it all the time, because I like this. I like that different odd, peculiar way that he has in terms of how driven and how motivated and how intense and how focused he always is."

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Monday Notebook: Godwin a Steady Threat in Passing Game

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11378675.jpegUNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - On the heels of a strong performance in the Pinstripe Bowl, sophomore wide receiver Chris Godwin worked tirelessly during the offseason to take his game to the next level.


Godwin has picked up right where he left off in Yankee Stadium and has been a consistent threat for the Nittany Lion passing attack during the first five games of the seasons.

Ranked sixth in the Big Ten, Godwin has made 23 catches (4.6 per game) for 349 yards and scored a touchdown for the Nittany Lions. The true sophomore is pleased with how the passing game is taking advantage of the opportunities given.

Mostly we are making the plays that we didn't make earlier in the year," Godwin said. "Some deep passes we haven't been able to make early in the year, we are completing now. As the year goes on we are continuing to improve."

The Delaware native has been a threat down field, notching a team-best five receptions of 30 or more yards. That list includes a season-long 49-yard connection with Christian Hackenberg on a fingertip catch against Army on Saturday.

Godwin has receptions 30 (two times), 32, 38 and 49 yards this season.

"Chris Godwin has been big all year long, coming down with contested catches for us," said head coach James Franklin.

Nassib Remains Among Nation's Best
Playing a team with fewer than 10 pass attempts per game during the first four weeks of the season, the Nittany Lion defensive line knew that it would have limited opportunities to make plays behind the line of scrimmage against Army on Saturday.

Nonetheless, senior defensive end Carl Nassib made the most of the opportunity by tallying his eighth sack of the season, continuing a string of at least one sack in every game this season.

After entering the season with 2.0 career sacks and 5.5 career tackles for loss, Nassib has now made 10.0 tackles for loss and 8.0 sacks in five games this season. He's been a man on a mission since training camp opened in August, and he's been one of Penn State's most productive players as the season nears the midpoint.

Nassib is ranked No. 2 in the nation in sacks and No. 5 in tackles for loss. He is also ranked second in the Big Ten in both statistical categories. As a team, the Nittany Lions are third in sacks and fourth nationally in tackles for loss.

Penn State 4-0 at Home
The Nittany Lions improved to 4-0 inside Beaver Stadium with the victory over Army, marking the first time since the 2008 season with four-straight wins to open the home slate. The Lions went 7-0 at home in 2008 en route to winning the Big Ten and playing in the Rose Bowl.

Since Beaver Stadium opened in 1960, Penn State has started 4-0 at home 22 times. This season marks the fourth time since 2000 that the Nittany Lions have started the season with four consecutive home wins. The Lions went 5-0 in 2005, '07 and '08.

Early Look at Indiana
Indiana will enter Saturday's game after playing top-ranked Ohio State to the wire on Saturday in Bloomington. The Hoosiers went toe-to-toe with the Buckeyes for 60 minutes, falling just shy in a 34-27 Ohio State victory. Indiana tallied more than 400 yards of total offense against Ohio State, including 176 on the ground.

The Hoosiers enter the game with a 4-1 overall record following victories over Southern Illinois (48-47), Florida International (36-22), Western Kentucky (38-35) and Wake Forest (31-24) to open the season. Senior quarterback Nate Sudfeld enters the game as the Big Ten's second-ranked passer (1,277 yards, 7 TDs, 1 INT). Sudfeld left the game on Saturday with an ankle injury, but said in the media on Monday that he is hopeful to return against the Nittany Lions on Saturday.

Extended Game Highlight
Watch extended game highlights from the victory over Army on Saturday.

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