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Postgame Notes

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Nov. 23, 2008


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• With its victory over Michigan State, Penn State claimed its third Big Ten Championship and second in the past four seasons (1994, 2005, 2008). The Nittany Lions will be the Big Ten's automatic qualifier into the Bowl Championship Series and will play in the Rose Bowl (January 1, 2009) or BCS National Championship game (Jan. 8). The BCS match-ups will be announced Dec. 7.

• Today's victory marked the 800th in Penn State history as the Nittany Lions became just the sixth school to achieve the mark, joining Michigan (872), Notre Dame (830), Texas (830), Nebraska (815) and Ohio State (808).  Penn State has an all-time record of 800-348-42.

Joe Paterno improved his NCAA record victory total to 383. He is now 383-126-3 (75.1) in his 43rd season collecting his third conference title to go with two national titles.

• The game marked the last in Beaver Stadium for 17 seniors. The class is the first to have 40 or more career wins at Penn State since the Class of  '97 went 41-8.

• Penn State has a 40-10 (80.0) record since the start of the 2005 season, tied for No. 8 in the nation with TCU.

• Penn State posted its 14th 11-win season under coach Joe Paterno and the first since the 2005 Big Ten Championship team went 11-1. The Nittany Lions have at least two seasons with 11 or more wins in each of the past five decades under Paterno.

• Penn State has won 27 of its last 29 games (93 percent) in Beaver Stadium, dating to a 37-13 win over Michigan State on Senior Day 2004.

• Penn State set a school record with 419 passing yards. The previous mark was 399 yards vs. Iowa in 2002 (all by Zack Mills).

• Penn State had a season-high nine plays over 20 yards on the game, eight passing and one rushing. Among them were plays of 70, 59, 49, 37, 33 and 32 yards, all through the air. The Nittany Lions averaged 8.4 yards per play.

• Penn State's 86-yard touchdown drive in the second quarter was its longest drive by yardage this season, until it was surpassed by a 96-yard touchdown drive in the third quarter.

• Penn State held Michigan State's Javon Ringer to a season-low 42 yards, 98.7 yards below his average. Ringer entered the game ranked third in the NCAA in rushing averaging 140.7 yards per game and was fourth in all-purpose yards (173.2 ypg). He tallied 69 all-purpose yards, 104 below average.

• Penn State and Iowa are the only teams in the country to have faced 3 of the 10 semi-finalists for the Doak Walker Award. Penn State faced Jacquizz Rodgers of Oregon State, Shonn Green of Iowa and Javon Ringer, all of whom were held below their season averages vs. Penn State. Green (117 yards) was the only back among the three to eclipse 100 yards vs. the Nittany Lions.

• Penn State's rushing defense has held opponents to an average of 95.9 yards per game this season, including giving up just 35 to Michigan State. The Lions lead the Big Ten and are No. 8 in the nation in rushing defense.

Daryll Clark passed for a career high 341 yards and four touchdowns, the sixth-highest passing yardage game in school history. It was the first 300-yard passing game and the most passing yards for a Penn State player since Michael Robinson threw for 379 yards vs. Wisconsin in 2003. Anthony Morelli had the last four-touchdown passing game for a Penn State quarterback vs. Buffalo in 2007.

Daryll Clark's 70-yard touchdown toss to Deon Butler in the third quarter was a career long. Clark completed passes of 70, 49, 37, 33, 32, 28 and 26 yards, with TD passes of 32 yards to Derrick Williams and 70 yards to Deon Butler. Clark averaged 21.3 yards per completion.

Daryll Clark completed 11-of-18 passes for 215 yards and two touchdowns in the first half, marking his fifth 200-yard passing game of the season.

Daryll Clark surpassed 2,000 yards passing on the day, marking the fourth straight season in which a Penn State quarterback has done so. It is the 13th 2,000-yard passing season in Penn State history and Clark is the 12th player to accomplish the feat. His 2,319 yards on 171-of-285 passing (60%) currently rank as the seventh best passing yardage season in Penn State history. His 171 completions rank seventh in a season and his 17 touchdown passes are tied for seventh.

• With one rushing touchdown on the day, pushing his season rushing TD total to nine, Clark now has 26 touchdowns accounted for on the season.

Deon Butler made a career-best three touchdown catches on the day, including catches of 70 and 59 yards. Each of his three catches on the day went for touchdowns as he brought his career TD total to 22. He ranks third all-time behind Kenny Jackson (25) and Bobby Engram (31) in TD receptions. Butler totaled 133 yards on his three catches, his third 100-yard receiving game of the season and the sixth of his career. He averaged 44 yards and six points per touch on the day.

• With four receptions in the first half, senior Derrick Williams posted his third straight season with 40 or more receptions. He finished the game with four catches for 51 yards, giving him 40 for the year.

He moved into 10th all-time on the Penn State career receiving chart with 1,709 yards on his career passing Tony Johnson's total of 1,702.

Jordan Norwood posted his third 100-yard receiving game of the season and the fourth of his career catching five passes for 127 yards.

Evan Royster gained a game-high 79 yards on just 12 carries (6.6), becoming the ninth Nittany Lion to surpass 1,200 rushing yards in a season (11 times). Royster has 1,202 yards, with Curtis Enis (1,210 in 1996) in 10th place.

Graham Zug's touchdown catch was his second on the season.

• Senior Anthony Scirrotto recorded his second interception of the season in the second quarter. It marked the 12th of his career tying him with Junior Powell (1961-63), Derek Bochna (1990-93), Brian Miller (1993-96) and Alan Zemaitis (2002-05) for fifth all-time at Penn State.

• Senior Lydell Sargeant made his team-leading fourth interception of the season and the seventh of his career. Sargeant is tied for second in the Big Ten with four picks.

• Senior placekicker Kevin Kelly connected on all seven of his PAT attempts, giving him 419 career points. He moved in to fifth place in NCAA career scoring (all players) and is in third place in NCAA career scoring among kickers. Former Houston kicker Roman Anderson is next on both lists with 423 points.

Kevin Kelly moved into second place in Big Ten career scoring with 419 points, breaking a tie with Indiana's Anthony Thompson. Wisconsin's Ron Dayne is the leader with 426 points (includes bowl scoring, which NCAA does not recognize prior to 2002-03 season.)

Kevin Kelly did not attempt a field goal, ending his NCAA record of 31 consecutive games with at least one field goal made.

• Senior fullback Dan Lawlor scored his second touchdown on the season and third of his career to put Penn State up 14-0.

Maurice Evans recorded his third sack of the season in the second quarter. It was the 17th sack of his career tying Justin Kurpeikis for 13th all-time.

Abe Koroma recorded his second sack of the season on Michigan State's first possession.

Ollie Ogbu recorded his second sack of the season in the first quarter.

• Penn State improved to 13-12-1 in the series with Michigan State, returning the Land Grant Trophy to Happy Valley for the 12th time in 16 Trophy game meetings since 1993.

• Penn State and Michigan State have combined to score 1,004 points in their 16 Big Ten games, an average of 62.7 points per game. The Nittany Lions have scored 566 points (35.3 avg.) and the Spartans have scored 438 points (27.3 avg.).






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