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Penn State-Nebraska Game Notes

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PENN STATE vs. NEBRASKA
 
Saturday, Nov. 18 | 4 p.m.
Beaver Stadium | University Park, Pa.
 
GAME DAY INFO
TV: BTN

Radio: 93.7 FM | 1450 AM
Sirius/XM: 134/195

 

GAME DAY LINKS
 
Game Notes: Penn State | Nebraska
Statistics: Penn State | Nebraska
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Nov. 13, 2017

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - A pair of the all-time winningest programs will meet for Penn State's Senior Day presented by the Penn State Alumni Association, as the Nittany Lions host Nebraska in its home finale in front of a "Stripe Out" crowd Saturday at 4 p.m. with television coverage on FS1.

Penn State is honoring 23 seniors pregame for their contributions on the gridiron and in the classroom. The group includes head coach James Franklin's first recruits to complete their senior years. The class entered Penn State under unprecedented circumstances, but helped lead the Nittany Lions to heights many thought were unreachable, as the Lions won the Big Ten Championship and appeared in the Rose Bowl last season, and qualified for their fourth bowl in as many years this season.

However, none of the seniors have played against Nebraska, as the Cornhuskers and Nittany Lions are meeting for the first time since 2013. The match-up pits a pair of teams that both rank in the Top 10 all-time in college football wins and winning percentage.

Penn State returned to the win column in its last outing, defeating Rutgers for its 13th-straight win in Beaver Stadium. Penn State is 8-2 overall after 10 games for the second consecutive year. 

The Nittany Lion defense shined against Rutgers, allowing just two field goals and 200 yards. The unit ranks fourth in FBS allowing just 13.9 points per game.

Penn State quarterback Trace McSorley continues to lead the Big Ten in passing yards, while running back Saquon Barkley is second in FBS averaging 184.6 all-purpose yards per game.

Penn State concludes the regular season next week at Maryland.

 

SENIORS TO BE HONORED

BLUE OR WHITE?

  • Penn State will host its third annual "Stripe Out" game, as fans attending Beaver Stadium are coordinated to wear blue or white clothing in alternating sections to create a stripe effect.
  • Penn State is undefeated in its two previous Stripe Out games, defeating Rutgers, 28-3, in the inaugural game (Sept. 19, 2015) and defeating Temple last season (Sept. 17), 34-27.

FIRST TIME ON FS1

  • Penn State will be making its first television appearance on FS1, which was founded in 2013.
  • It is Penn State's first debut on a cable network since appearing on ESPN Classic in 2009.

PENN STATE-NEBRASKA CONNECTIONS

  • Penn State junior CB Jabari Butler and Nebraska junior OL Nick Gates, freshman WR Tyjon Lindsey and junior LS Jordan Ober played together at Bishop Gorman High School in Nevada.
  • Penn State freshman WR KJ Hamler and Nebraska freshman OL Broc Brando played at IMG Academy.
  • Penn State co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach Tim Banks and Nebraska defensive coordinator Bob Diaco just missed each other at Cincinnati. Diaco departed as the defensive coordinator following the 2010 season, and Banks immediately followed as the co-defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach.
  • Diaco played at Iowa and went 0-3 as a student-athlete against the Nittany Lions from 1993-95.
  • Banks and Nebraska offensive line coach Mike Cavanaugh just missed each other at Ferris State. Cavanaugh departed as the offensive line coach following the 1996 season, and Banks arrived in 1997 as the defensive backs coach.
  • Penn State offensive line coach Matt Limegrover and Nebraska director of football operations Adam Clark worked together at Northern Illinois from 2008-10 and Minnesota from 2011-15. Limegrover served as the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach in both locations, while Clark served in administrative roles with the football programs in both locations.
  • Limegrover and Nebraska head football strength coach Mark Philipp were both at Southern Illinois, as Limegrover served as the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach (2001-2007) and Philipp was a student-athlete on the team (graduated in 2006).

WINNING WAYS

  • Penn State is 8-2 after 10 games for a second consecutive season.
  • Penn State is 17-3 in its last 20 games, the best span since going 20-0 from 1993-95.
  • Penn State started a season 7-0 for the first time since 2008, when the team started 9-0.
  • Penn State's 4-0 start in Big Ten play marked the first such start since 2011, when Penn State began 5-0. 
  • Penn State's victory over No. 19 Michigan as the No. 2-ranked team was its first as a top-five team over a ranked opponent since winning 13-6 at No. 10 Ohio State in 2008 as the No. 3-ranked team.
  • Penn State is one of seven teams that has had a winning season the last 13 consecutive years, with only Wisconsin, Oklahoma, Virginia Tech, USC, Boise State and LSU also achieving the feat. Florida State can also do the same this season. 

STIFF COMPETITION

  • In terms of opponent winning percentage, Penn State has played the fourth toughest schedule among the CFP Top 25 teams this season with its opponents combining for a 59-40 record (.596). (From Coaches by the Numbers)
  • Penn State played three ranked opponents (No. 19 Michigan, No. 6 Ohio State, No. 24 Michigan State) in a row for the first time since facing four consecutive ranked opponents in 2004 (No. 20 Wisconsin, No. 20 Minnesota, No. 9 Purdue, No. 25 Iowa).

IN THE RANKINGS

  • Penn State was ranked No. 14 in the latest College Football Playoff rankings (Nov. 7) and is ranked No. 13 by the Associated Press and No. 11 in the Amway Coaches Poll.
  • Penn State's streak of 20-straight weeks in the AP Top 25 is the eighth-longest active streak in FBS.

AP Poll statistics are since 1936; according to CollegePollArchive.com

STREAKING

  • With a win over Rutgers on Homecoming, Penn State extended its home winning streak to 13 games, tied for 10th-longest in the school annals. It is the longest home winning streak of Penn State's Big Ten era and the longest since a 14-game streak from 1990-92.
  • The Nittany Lions have scored 20 or more points in 20 consecutive games, which is the longest streak since a 20-game streak from 1993-95.
  • Penn State has forced at least one turnover in 11-straight games dating back to the 2017 Rose Bowl, its longest streak since forcing a turnover in 29-straight games from 2007 to 2009.
  • QB Trace McSorley has thrown a touchdown pass in 25 consecutive games, dating to the 2016 TaxSlayer Bowl, extending his school record. It is the second-longest active streak in FBS behind Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield (34).
  • TE Mike Gesicki has recorded a reception in his last 24 games, dating back to the 2016 season opener.
  • K Tyler Davis has converted a Penn State-record 122 consecutive PAT kicks.
  • Out Front
  • Of the 600 minutes played this season, Penn State has only trailed for 34 minutes, 6 seconds.
  • Penn State has played 80.8 percent of its plays (1,364 of 1,688) with the lead, which ranks third in FBS, behind UCF (84.9 percent) and Alabama (82.7 percent).
  • Penn State has also played 56.6 percent (956 of 1688) of its plays with a 10 or more point lead, which is second in FBS only to Alabama.

According to Coaches by the Numbers

HEARTBREAKERS

  • Four of Penn State's last five losses, dating back to the 2016 season (2017: Michigan State, 27-24; Ohio State, 39-38. 2016: USC, 52-49; Pitt 42-39) have been decided by three points or less.
  • Penn State's last three losses (2017: Michigan State, 27-24; Ohio State, 39-38. 2016: USC, 52-49) have been decided by three points or less for a combined margin of seven points, the smallest margin of defeat in three-straight losses in program history.
  • The losses to USC and Michigan State came on field goals as time expired, while Ohio State took the lead with 1:48 remaining.
  • Penn State's two losses this season (Michigan State, 27-24; Ohio State, 39-38) have been decided by a combined margin of four points, which is the smallest margin amongst two-loss teams in FBS. Of the 16 two-loss teams in FBS, Auburn (8 pts and 4 pts) and Washington (6 pts and 8 pts) are the only other teams to lose twice by single digits.
  • The four-point combined margin of defeat is tied for the second smallest amongst all FBS teams, as one-loss teams Clemson (3 pts) and South Florida (4 pts) are the only other FBS teams in the category. Of the five one-loss teams in FBS, three lost by more than four points. 
  • Penn State last lost a game by more than three points on Sept. 24, 2016 at Michigan (49-10).

POPULAR NITTANY LIONS

  • Penn State ranks third in the nation with an average home attendance of 106,704.
  • PSU hosted 110,823 against Michigan this season for its largest crowd in Beaver Stadium history, surpassing the record of 110,753 (Nebraska; Sept. 14, 2002).
  • The crowd was also the sixth-largest to ever see a Penn State game (home, away, neutral).
  • The attendance of 109,898 for the Penn State-Pitt game was the eighth-largest crowd in Beaver Stadium history, the largest since Penn State faced Ohio State in 2009 in front of 110,033 in 2009.
  • The Penn State Student Section sold out more than 21,000 tickets in just 89 minutes, highlighted by the sold-out allotments of the senior (20), junior (10) and freshmen (15) classes in less than 20 minutes each.
  • The Penn State Student Section has consistently sold out for four decades, showing the unwavering passion and dedication of Penn State students.
  • Penn State sold more than 9,000 new season tickets for the 2017 campaign. The season ticket renewal rate topped 95 percent to help the Lions exhaust their season ticket allotment for the first time since 2008.

BARKLEY IN THE MIX FOR NATIONAL HONORS

  • RB Saquon Barkley is among the 18 semifinalists for the Maxwell Award for the Collegiate Player of the Year and is among the four finalists for the Louisville Sports Commission's Paul Hornung Award presented by Texas Roadhouse.
  • Penn State is tied for the national lead among all colleges and universities with seven Maxwell Award winners. The Maxwell Award, named in honor of Robert W. "Tiny" Maxwell, has been given to America's College Player of the Year since 1937. Maxwell's contributions to the game of football were extensive, including time as a player, a sportswriter and an official. 
  • Barkley is the first Penn State player to be named a finalist for the Paul Hornung Award, which was established in 2010. The Paul Hornung Award presented by Texas Roadhouse is given annually by the Louisville Sports Commission to the most versatile player in major college football. This year's winner of the award will be honored March 7, 2018 at a banquet at the Galt House Hotel in downtown Louisville.
  • Barkley has been named to the Paul Hornung Award weekly honor roll four times (Sept. 11, Sept. 25, Oct. 1, Oct. 23) this season. The Paul Hornung Award is presented to the most versatile player in major college football.

McSORLEY UP FOR QB HONORS

  • QB Trace McSorley is among 16 semifinalists for the Davey O'Brien National Quarterback of the Year Award and among the 10 candidates for the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award.
  • The O'Brien Award is presented annually to the nation's best college quarterback and is the oldest and most prestigious national quarterback award. The Davey O'Brien Award honors candidates who exemplify Davey O'Brien's enduring character while exhibiting teamwork, sportsmanship and leadership in both academics and athletics.
  • Todd Blackledge (1982) and Kerry Collins (1994) are the Nittany Lions that have claimed the O'Brien Award.
  • The Davey O'Brien Fan Vote counts as five percent during each round of the voting process, and is combined with the results from the Foundation's national selection committee, which is comprised of journalists, broadcasters, commentators and former winners. After clearing the first round totals, the Fan Vote at VoteOBrien.org will reopen today and remain open until noon (CT) on Sunday, Nov. 19, for the second round of balloting. Fans are invited to cast their vote for the nation's best college quarterback as often as once daily per email address.
  • The Golden Arm Award is presented at the end of each football season and the winner is selected based on his accomplishments both on and off the field. Candidates must be a college senior or fourth-year junior on schedule to graduate with their class.

MILESTONE WATCH

  • RB Saquon Barkley is four points from 100 for the season, which would make him just the second Nittany Lion (Kevin Kelly) to have two or more 100-point seasons.
  • Barkley is 101 yards shy of his third 1,000-yard rushing season.
  • Barkley is 29 rushing yards shy of 3,500 for his career.
  • QB Trace McSorley is 334 yards shy of posting the fourth 3,000-yard passing season in Penn State history and becoming the first to do it twice.
  • McSorley is 535 passing yards shy of becoming the third Penn State quarterback at Penn State to total 7,000 career passing yards.
  • McSorley is 50 pass completions shy of becoming the  fourth Penn State quarterback to complete 500 career passes. 
  • McSorley is 51 rushing yards shy of becoming the second Penn State quarterback to total more than 400 rushing yards in a season (Michael Robinson, 806; 2003).
  • WRs Saeed Blacknall and DeAndre Thompkins are both closing in on 1,000 receiving yards for their careers. Blacknall (918) needs 82 more yards, while Thompkins (814) needs 186.

MILESTONES ACHIEVED

  • Penn State earned its 125th Big Ten win with a 35-6 defeat of Rutgers (Nov. 11).
  • During the win over Rutgers, QB Trace McSorley became the third Penn State player to surpass 7,000 career total offense yards.
  • McSorley became the first Penn State quarterback to throw 50 career touchdown passes, surpassing the Penn State record of 48 (Christian Hackenberg; 2013-15) at Michigan State. 
  • McSorley became the fourth player in program history to surpass 6,000 career passing yards, joining  Hackenberg, Zack Mills and Matt McGloin, with 381 yards passing at Michigan State.
  • McSorley surpassed the 2,000-yard season passing plateau against Ohio State, becoming the 20th player in program history to have a 2,000-yard passing season.
  • Also at Ohio State, McSorley became seventh Nittany Lion to reach 400 career completions.
  • McSorley became the fifth Nittany Lion with 6,000 career yards of total offense with 358 yards of total offense against Michigan.
  • RB Saquon Barkley became the second Nittany Lion to surpass 5,000 career all-purpose yards, doing so against Rutgers and also becoming the Penn State record holder.
  • Barkley became the first Penn State running back to total 500 yards receiving in a season by adding 33 yards at Michigan State.
  • With 172 all-purpose yards against Ohio State, Barkley surpassed the 1,500-yard mark for the season. It is the 12th time in program history a player has reached the 1,500-yard mark and he is the third player to do it twice.
  • Barkley is the first Penn State player  and fourth Big Ten player with 3,000 rushing yards and 1,000 receiving yards in his career, surpassing 1,000 receiving yards against Michigan. Barkley is the 30th Nittany Lion with at least 1,000 receiving yards.
  • With three touchdowns, Barkley became the sixth Nittany Lion overall and first non-placekicker to surpass 252 points in career. 
  • Barkley surged past 3,000 career rushing yards and 4,000 career all-purpose yards at Iowa. He is the seventh and ninth Nittany Lion all-time to accomplish the respective feats.
  • WR DaeSean Hamilton finished the Rutgers game with 200 career receptions, extending his Penn State record.
  • With 74 receiving yards against Akron, Hamilton surpassed 2,000 yards for his career.
  • S Marcus Allen reached 300 career tackles at Ohio State.
  • TE Mike Gesicki surpassed 100 career receptions at Ohio State, becoming the first tight end at Penn State to achieve the feat.
  • Gesicki surpassed 1,000 career receiving yards against Pitt, making him the 29th player to achieve the feat at Penn State.
  • K Tyler Davis converted his 100th career extra point at Northwestern.
  • Head coach James Franklin earned his 50th career victory with the Nittany Lions' season opening win.
  • Jason Cabinda surpassed 200 career tackles for his career with three against Akron.

POINT DIFFERENTIAL

  • With a prolific offense, lockdown defense and help on special teams, Penn State ranks fourth in FBS with an average point differential of 23.8 points.
  • Penn State has been particularly strong in the first quarter, outscoring opponents 118-13. The Lions were the only FBS team yet to allow a first-quarter point until Ohio State managed a field goal in Week 9. 
  • Penn State posted two shutouts and two 50-plus point scoring efforts in its first three games.
  • Penn State has scored fewer than 31 points just twice this season (21 at Iowa; 24 at Michigan State) and allowed more than 14 points just three times this season (19 at Iowa; 39 at Ohio State; 27 at Michigan State).

HIGH SCORING

  • Penn State's scoring average of 37.7 points per game ranks 17th in FBS and second in the Big Ten.
  • The Nittany Lions have scored 20 or more points in 20 consecutive games, which is the longest streak since a 20-game streak from 1993-95.
  • The streak is the third-longest active streak in FBS (USF, 26; Oklahoma, 21).
  • The 38 points scored by Penn State at Ohio State were the most for the Nittany Lions in Columbus in program history. The previous high was 37 by the 1912 team. They were also the most by a Penn State team against Ohio State since the Nittany Lions scored 63 points in 1994, and the most given up by Ohio State since Michigan scored 41 points in 2013.
  • The 42 points scored by Penn State against Michigan marked the most points given up by Michigan since allowing 42 points to Ohio State in 2015.
  • Penn State's streak of scoring 30-plus points ended at 10 consecutive games at Iowa. It was the longest stretch for the Lions since a string of 15-straight games with 30-plus points from 1993-94. However, Penn State has still scored 30-plus points in 14 out of the last 16 games.
  • With 56 points in its win over Georgia State, Penn State became the fifth Big Ten team to score 30 or more points in 10 consecutive games.
  • The 56-point margin of victory by Penn State against Georgia State is the largest for the Nittany Lions since they won by 56 (66-10) against Coastal Carolina in 2008. It was also the largest shutout victory since a 59-0 win over FIU in 2007.

BARKLEY DOES IT ALL

  • From running to pass catching to returning, Saquon Barkley is second in the nation with 184.6 all-purpose yards per game this season. San Diego State's Rashaad Penny is just ahead averaging 203.3 yards per game.
  • Barkley was named as a midseason All-American by multiple publications and Maxwell Award semifinalist.
  • Barkley is also the career active FBS leader in all-purpose yards per game, averaging 144.3.
  • Barkley ranks 10th in FBS and second in the Big Ten averaging 142.3 yards from scrimmage per game. 
  • Barkley currently leads Penn State in rushing yards per game (89.9) and is second in receiving yards per game (52.4). Both figures rank in the Top 10 of the Big Ten third and 10th, respectively.
  • His 16 total touchdowns are tops in the Big Ten and rank tied for sixth in FBS.
  • Against Michigan State, Barkley completed his second career pass, this one for a career-long 20 yards to Mike Gesicki. Barkley is the first Penn State running back to have two completed passes in a season since Nick Scott (2-2, 49 yards) in 2015.
  • Barkley's 20-yard completion was the longest by a Penn State running back since Eric McCoo threw a 63-yard touchdown pass against Illinois in 2001.
  • With a 97-yard kickoff return to open the Ohio State game. Barkley is one of nine FBS players with two or more kickoff returns for touchdowns.
  • Barkley accomplished multiple firsts against Indiana, completing a pass to DaeSean Hamilton that went for a touchdown and returning his first kickoff for a touchdown.
  • Barkley is the first player in the last 20 years with 50 rushing yards, 50 receiving yards, a passing touchdown and kickoff return for a touchdown in a game.
  • Barkley is the first Big Ten player and sixth FBS player since 1996 with a kickoff return for a touchdown and a passing touchdown in the same game.
  • Barkley is the seventh FBS player in the last five years and 20th since 2000 with a rushing touchdown, receiving touchdown, passing touchdown and kickoff return touchdown in the same season.
  • Barkley's first-career passing touchdown was the first for Penn State running back since Nick Scott threw a scoring pass against Illinois during the 2015 campaign.
  • Barkley is the ninth different non-QB to throw a TD pass for Penn State and it is the 10th time that it has happened since 1967.
  • Barkley broke the Penn State record for all-purpose yards in a game with 358 yards (211 rush, 94 receiving, 53 return) at Iowa. He broke the mark previously held by Curt Warner (341; at Syracuse in 1981), and the figure also ranks 10th all-time in Big Ten history.
  • Barkley's 211 rushing yards at Iowa were a career high, besting the mark set at Purdue (207) in 2016.
  • According to ESPN Stats & Info, Barkley's average of 213.3 scrimmage yards in the first four games was the most by a Big Ten player in the first four games over last 10 seasons. No one has topped 200 yards average in the last 10 years.
  • Barkley recorded 226 all-purpose yards (47 rushing, 142 receiving, 37 return) against Georgia State. His 142 receiving yards were a career high, surpassing his previous mark of 77 set last season at Michigan.

BARKLEY IN THE RECORD BOOKS

  • Running back Saquon Barkley has placed his name all over the Penn State record books.
  • Barkley became Penn State's career all-purpose yards leader against Rutgers. His 5,055 career yards broke the previous mark of 5,045 yards set by Larry Johnson (1999-2002).
  • Barkley tied the Penn State running back record for career receptions of 88 (Tony Hunt, 2003-06) with one against Rutgers. He ranks in a tie for 20th in career receptions at Penn State overall.
  • With 1,846 all-purpose yards for the season, Barkley owns the third-best mark at Penn State. He passed O.J. McDuffie (1,831; 1992) and Blair Thomas (1,772; 1987) against Rutgers and trails his own mark of 1,972 yards from last year for second place.
  • Barkley is in second place on Penn State's career rushing list with 3,471 yards. He is only pursuing  record holder Evan Royster (3,932; 2007-10).
  • His career rushing total is the most by a Penn State player in his first three seasons. The previous high was Curtis Enis with 3,256 yards.
  • With 1,087 career receiving yards, Barkley is in 25th place on Penn State's all-time list and the running back record holder.
  • Barkley has 524 receiving yards this season, which betters his own single season receiving yardage record for a running back at Penn State. Last season, he had 402 receiving yards in 14 games.
  • Barkley recorded his 13th career 100-yard game with 108 rushing yards against Michigan. He is tied for eighth in Penn State history for 100-yard games with John Cappelletti.
  • Barkley had two rushing touchdowns against Rutgers, giving him 36 rushing touchdowns for his career, which moves him into a tie for second place at Penn State with Curtis Enis. He trails Lydell Mitchell, who had 38 rushing touchdowns in his career for the top mark at Penn State.
  • Barkley's 16 touchdowns this season move him into sole possession of eighth place at Penn State. He trails John Cappelletti's 17 touchdowns in 1973 for seventh place.
  • With 12 points scored against Rutgers, Barkley moved into a tie for third in program history in career scoring (276 points) with Brett Conway (1993-96).
  • Barkley owns the most points by a Penn State player who was not a place kicker. The previous high was Lydell Mitchell, who had 246 points on 41 touchdowns (1969-71). That record stood for 46 years.
  • Barkley has scored 96 points this season, which is tied for 16th on the Nittany Lion single-season chart with Kevin Kelly (2010).
  • Barkley is one of just eight Nittany Lions to post multiple 200-yard rushing games and ranks in a tie for second with John Cappelletti. He trails Larry Johnson (4) for the career record.

B1G LEADING PASSER

  • QB Trace McSorley is among Big Ten passing leaders in multiple categories for a second consecutive season.
  • McSorley leads the Big Ten (21st FBS) with 266.6 passing yards per game and 2,452 total passing yards (19th FBS).
  • McSorley's 65.0 completion percentage is third in the Big Ten (16th FBS).
  • McSorley is averaging 301.5 yards of total offense per game to rank second in the Big Ten (16th FBS).
  • McSorley's 21 passing touchdowns rank third in the Big Ten (17th FBS). 
  • Responsible for 18.0 points per game, McSorley ranks second in the Big Ten (13th FBS). 
  • McSorley's passing efficiency of 152.4 ranks third (17th FBS).
  • McSorley is among the most efficient active quarterbacks in FBS, as his career efficiency rating of 152.24 ranks 11th overall and second among Big Ten passers.
  • Averaging 7.09 yards of total offense per play for his career, McSorley leads the Big Ten and ranks 11th in FBS among active quarterbacks.
  • McSorley's 68 career touchdowns responsible for rank 18th in FBS and second in the Big Ten, and his 52 touchdown passes rank 25th in FBS and second in the Big Ten.
  • McSorley is averaging 208.5 yards passing per game for his career to rank second in the Big Ten and 31st in FBS.
  • McSorley's career completion percentage of 60.5 ranks second in the Big Ten and 24th in FBS.

 

TOSSING TOUCHDOWNS

  • QB Trace McSorley has the second-longest active touchdown passes streak in FBS, throwing two against Rutgers to extend the streak to 25.
  • His 21 touchdown passes on the season rank third in the Big Ten and 17th in FBS.
  • Responsible for 18.0 points per game, McSorley ranks second in the Big Ten and 13th in FBS. 
  • He had his 16th career multi-passing touchdown game at Michigan State (1 in 2015, 8 in 2016, 7 in 2017).
  • McSorley threw four TD passes against Georgia State, marking the fourth time he has had at least four touchdown passes in a game and the sixth time he has had at least three touchdown passes in his career.

McSORLEY CLIMBING PENN STATE CHARTS

  • Quarterback Trace McSorley continues to rewrite the Penn State record books. 
  • McSorley improved his Penn State record for career passing touchdowns to 52 with two against Rutgers. Against Michigan State, he broke the Penn State career passing touchdowns record set by Christian Hackenberg (48; 2013-15).
  • With two passing touchdowns against Rutgers, McSorley has 21 pass TDs this season, tying him for fifth place with Tony Sacca (1991) and Kerry Collins (1994).
  • With three touchdowns responsible for against Rutgers, McSorley moved into sole possession of first place on the Penn State career charts with 68. He passed Daryll Clark's mark of 65 touchdowns responsible for from 2006-09.
  • McSorley's three touchdowns responsible for against Rutgers give him 30 on the season, the third-best single season mark at Penn State. He passed Daryll Clark (29; 2008), Matt McGloin (29; 2012) and Michael Robinson (28; 2005). Just ahead of him is Daryll Clark (31; 2009) for second place
  • McSorley increased his single season passing yardage to 2,666, which puts him in seventh place on the Penn State season list. He trails Kerry Collins (2,679 yards, 1994) for sixth place.
  • The 200-yard passing effort against Rutgers was the 19th of McSorley's career to move him into sole possession of second place in the Penn State career record books, breaking a tie with Matt McGloin (18 from 2009-12). He trails only Christian Hackenberg's 21 career 200-yard passing games.
  • It was McSorley's eighth 200-yard passing game of the season, tying him with Daryll Clark (2009) for fifth place at Penn State.
  • McSorley's 214 passing yards against Rutgers give him 6,465 for his career, which moves him past Matt McGloin (6,390 yards) and into third place at Penn State. He trails Zack Mills (7,212 yards) for second.
  • McSorley had 16 completions against Rutgers, good for 206 this season, which is eighth-best at Penn State on the single-season chart. He passed three players--Wally Richardson (193; 1995); Daryll Clark (192; 2008); and Christian Hackenberg (192; 2015). Up next on the chart is Anthony Morelli (208; 2006).
  • McSorley has 450 career completions, moving him into fifth place at Penn State. He passed Daryll Clark (444) against Rutgers and trails Anthony Morelli (460) for fourth.
  • With 7,222 career yards of total offense, McSorley is in third place on Penn State's all-time list.
  • McSorley has 3,015 yards of total offense this season, boosting him into fifth place in the Penn State record books for a single season. He passed Christian Hackenberg (2,887; 2013); Hackenberg again (2,883; 2014); and Daryll Clark (2,874; 2008) against Rutgers and trails Michael Robinson (3,156; 2005) for fourth place.
  • McSorley attempted 21 passes against Rutgers, giving him 744 in his career, which moves him into seventh place at Penn State. He passed Daryll Clark (738) and now trails Zack Mills (814) for sixth place.
  • McSorley's 13 rushing attempts against Rutgers give him 120 this season, which is the third-highest mark for a quarterback at Penn State for a single season. He trails his own 146 attempts last year for second place.
  • McSorley had 44 yards rushing against Rutgers, which gives him 349 this season, moving him into fourth place at Penn State for rushing yards by a quarterback in a single season. He trails his 365 yards from last season for third place.
  • McSorley has surpassed the 300-yard passing mark eight times in his career, which ranks second in Penn State history to Christian Hackenberg's nine, and three times this season, which is fifth. 
  • McSorley completed 15-straight pass attempts from the first quarter through the third quarter at Northwestern, breaking the Penn State record for consecutive completions. The previous record was set by Kerry Collins when he had 14-straight completions at Minnesota during the 1994 season.

 

HAMILTON HAULING IT IN

  • WR DaeSean Hamilton is Penn State's all-time receptions leader with 200 for his career.
  • Hamilton's career receptions total of 200 ranks 10th amongst active FBS players, while his receptions per game average (4.00) ranks 25th. He leads the Big Ten in both categories.
  • Hamilton is in third place on Penn State's career receiving yardage chart with 2,631 career receiving yards. He trails Deon Butler (2,771; 2005-08) for second.
  • Hamilton's career receiving yardage total of 2,631 ranks 11th among active FBS players, while his receiving yards per game average of 52.6 yards per game is 22nd. He leads the Big Ten in both categories.
  • With a receiving touchdown against Rutgers, Hamilton moved into a tie (O.J. McDuffie) for seventh place on Penn State's career receiving touchdowns list with 16. 
  • Against Michigan State, Hamilton posted his eighth career 100-yard effort to move into a tie with Bryant Johnson (1999-2002) for eighth place on Penn State's career list. It is his third 100-yard game of the season.
  • Hamilton is the ninth player in program history with 2,000 career receiving yards.
  • Hamilton had a career-high three touchdown receptions against Indiana. He previously had one touchdown reception on 10 occasions. The three scoring grabs were the most by a Nittany Lion since Allen Robinson had three, also against Indiana, in 2012.
  • In addition to the three touchdowns against Indiana, Hamilton had 122 yards receiving. The performance earned him Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week and PFF National Team of the Week accolades.

TOP CATCHING DUOS AND TRIOS

  • DaeSean Hamilton (200) and Mike Gesicki (114) rank eighth in FBS and tops in the Big Ten among active receiving duos with 314 combined catches.
  • They are the third duo/trio to accomplish the feat at PSU, joining Deon Butler (179), Derrick Williams (161) and Jordan Norwood (158), who totaled 498 career receptions (2005-08), and Hamilton (161) and Chris Godwin (154), who totaled 315 receptions (2014-16).
  • Hamilton owns Penn State's all-time receptions record, while Gesicki owns its tight end receptions record.
  • Saquon Barkley (1,087), Gesicki (1,337) and Hamilton (2,631) are the second RB/WR/TE trio to each have 1,000 career receiving yards in Big Ten history (Purdue, 1982-85: WR Steve Griffin, 2,234 yards; RB Rodney Carter, 1,814 yards; TE Marty Scott, 1,247 yards).
  • Current Big Ten member Rutgers accomplished the feat (2002, 03-06) as a member of the Big East with TE Clark Harris, 2,015 yards; RB Brian Leonard, 1,868 yards and WR Shawn Tucker, 1,559 yards.
  • Barkley owns the Penn State running backs record for career receptions and receiving yards.

EVERY GAME GESICKI

  • TE Mike Gesicki became Penn State's all-time tight end receptions leader with five receptions at Iowa. He broke the record of 87 set by Andrew Quarless (2006-09) and now has 114 career receptions. The total ranks 11th overall in program history.
  • Gesicki's touchdown reception against Rutgers gave him five for the season and 11 for his career, tying Jesse James for career touchdown catches by a tight end at Penn State and tying his own season mark which he shares with James and two others.
  • With 1,337 career receiving yards, Gesicki ranks 19th in program history, trailing tight end career receiving yards record holder Ted Kwalick (1,343; 1966-68) for 18th.
  • Gesicki's eight catches and 89 yards receiving at Michigan State were both career highs, passing his previous marks of six and 88, respectively.
  • Gesicki was named to the Sports Illustrated Midseason All-America first team.
  • Gesicki holds the team's longest active receptions streak at 24 games, dating to the 2016 season opener. It ranks tied for the 23rd-longest active streak in FBS.
  • His five receiving touchdowns rank 10th in the Big Ten.

LIMITED ACCESS

  • Penn State is fourth in the nation and second in the Big Ten in scoring defense, averaging 13.9 points allowed per game.
  • Penn State has allowed 11.5 points per game fewer in 2017 than it did in 2016 (25.4).
  • Penn State owns a pair of shutout victories and has allowed more than 20 points in a game just twice.
  • Penn State has shutout opponents in at least one half in six games this season (Akron, Georgia State, Indiana, Northwestern, Michigan, Rutgers).
  • Penn State has been strong at the start of games. It was the last team to give up a first-quarter point (Week 9; Ohio State) and did not allow a first-quarter touchdown until Week 10 (Michigan State). PSU allowed an opening drive score for the first time this season against Rutgers (Week 11).
  • Penn State ranks eighth in FBS in first-half scoring defense, allowing just 7.4 points per game, and third in second-half scoring (6.5 avg). The Lions are as strong in the third quarter as they are in the first (1.3 avg), ranking first in scoring defense (1.3 avg). (Coaches by the Numbers)
  • Penn State only allowed 43 yards passing against Rutgers, the fewest allowed in a conference game since joining the Big Ten. The previous low was 48 yards last year at Rutgers.
  • The 43 yards passing were the fewest allowed by the Nittany Lions since giving up 32 yards to Army, a triple-option team, in 2015.
  • Penn State also only yielded 10 first downs which are tied for its seventh-fewest in a Big Ten game.
  • The seven pass completions allowed to Rutgers are tied for the second-fewest allowed by the Nittany Lions in a Big Ten game with five other games.
  • The six points allowed to Rutgers are tied for the ninth-fewest points allowed by the Lions in a conference game since joining the Big Ten.
  • Penn State has recorded two shutouts in a single season for the first time since notching two in 2007 (59-0 over FIU; 31-0 vs. Indiana).
  • The Nittany Lions nearly earned their third shutout of the season at Northwestern, but the Wildcats scored in the final two minutes of the game, snapping a five-quarter shutout streak that started in the second half of the Indiana game.
  • The 14 points allowed by Penn State in the first three games were the fewest in any three-game stretch since allowing 13 in a three-game stretch in the middle of the 2009 season (52-3 vs. Eastern Illinois; 20-0 vs. Minnesota; 35-10 at Michigan).
  • This is the third-straight year that PSU has shut out an opponent (39-0 vs. Illinois in 2015; 39-0 at Rutgers in 2016; 52-0 vs. Akron in 2017). It is the longest such streak since a three-year stretch from 1989-91 (17-0 at Rutgers in 1989; 28-0 vs. Rutgers and 9-0 at Alabama in 1990; and 81-0 vs. Cincinnati in 1991).

SENIOR STOPPERS

  • LB Jason Cabinda leads Penn State with 74 tackles this season, while classmate S Marcus Allen is second with 59. Both are Lott IMPACT Award quarterfinalists.
  • Cabinda ranks 12th in the Big Ten averaging 7.4 tackles per game.
  • Cabinda upped his career total to 272 tackles against Rutgers, which ranks him 11th in program history, two tackles behind John Skorupan (1970-72) and Shane Conlan (1983-86) for ninth (274).
  • Cabinda had 11 tackles against Rutgers, giving him nine games with 10 or more tackles in his career.
  • With 308 career tackles, Allen is in sixth place on Penn State's career chart.
  • With 10 tackles against Ohio State, Allen reached the 300-tackle mark for his career. It was Allen's ninth career double-digit tackle outing and second this season. 
  • LB Brandon Smith made his first start of the season against Rutgers, doing so at the Will linebacker position. It was his third career start and he excelled, making 10 tackles for his second career game with 10 or more stops (Maryland, 2016).
  • Senior S Troy Apke has matched his career high of eight tackles in two recent games (Ohio State and Michigan State). He ranks fourth on the team with a career-high 46 tackles this season.

SACK MASTERS

  • The Penn State defense is continuing to find the quarterback, averaging 2.90 sacks to rank fourth in the Big Ten and 21st in FBS.
  • The Penn State defense registered seven sacks against Michigan, the most since having seven sacks against Kent State in 2016. It was also the most by Penn State against a Big Ten opponent since having sev en sacks at Northwestern in 2011.
  • Penn State has brought a balanced pass rush as 20 different Nittany Lions have at least assisted on a sack. 
  • Against Rutgers, S Ayron Monroe, had a half-sack in the fourth quarter, the first of his career, as a part of a career-best seven-tackle performance.
  • At Michigan State, DE Yetur Gross-Matos had his first career sack with a shared takedown (Tyrell Chavis), and DE Shane Simmons had his first career sack too.
  • DE Shaka Toney leads the team with 4.0 sacks. He had 1.0 sack against Michigan and the first multi-sack game of his career at Northwestern, registering two solo QB takedowns. He had his first career solo sack and second career forced fumble on a strip-sack of QB Clayton Thorson in the first quarter.
  • The Nittany Lions have totaled 29 sacks in 10 games. With 46 sacks in 2015 and 40 sacks last season, Penn State posted back-to-back 40-sack seasons for the first time since it posted three-consecutive 40-sack seasons in 2005 (41), 2006 (40) and 2007 (46).

GETTING OFF THE FIELD

  • Penn State is averaging 5.10 three-and-outs per game to tie for 10th in FBS and third in the Big Ten.
  • Penn State has prevented a first down on 51-of-128 opposition drives (39.8 percent).

 

KNOCK IT DOWN

  • CB Amani Oruwariye leads the team with 1.5 passes defended, which also ranks third in the Big Ten and fifth in FBS.
  • CB Christian Campbell leads the team with 10 pass breakups on the season. He has recorded a pass breakup in all but two games this season (Ohio State and Rutgers).
  • Campbell ranks in a tie for 28th all-time at Penn State with 20 career pass breakups.
  • CB Grant Haley follows Campbell with nine pass breakups this season, but leads him on the career list with 22 to rank in a tie for 23rd at Penn State.
  • Haley had a career-high three pass breakups at Northwestern, topping his previous high of two, which he had accomplished three times, most recently at the Rose Bowl.
  • The Penn State defense had 11 pass breakups at Michigan State, marking the first time since at least 1999 that Penn State has posted double-digit pass breakups twice in the same season. The Nittany Lions previously made 10 pass breakups at Northwestern.
  • Penn State's 11 pass breakups at Michigan State were its most in a game since totaling 11 against Indiana in 2011.
  • The 11 pass breakups are tied for the third-most in a game for the Nittany Lions since 2000 (16, Purdue in 2000; 14, Michigan State in 2006; 11, Indiana in 2011).
  • In the Michigan State game, CB Amani Oruwariye had a career-high five pass breakups to go along with an interception, while true freshman CB Tariq Castro-Fields made his first three career pass breakups and was named to the Pro Football Focus Big Ten Team of the Week for his performance 
  • Oruwariye's five PBUs against Michigan State were the most by a Nittany Lion since Justin King had five vs. Purdue in 2007.
  • Oruwariye's six passes defended at Michigan State is tied for the most in FBS with Denzel Ward from Ohio State against Indiana. Both had five pass breakups and an interception.

 

DAVIS KICKING IT

  • K Tyler Davis had five PAT kicks against Rutgers, passing Brett Conway (119; 1994-96) for most consecutive PAT kicks at Penn State with 122.
  • Davis also moved into fifth place on the Big Ten's consecutive extra points made chart, passing Conway.
  • Davis had five points against Rutgers, giving him 236 for his career and moving into eighth place at Penn State. He passed Robbie Gould (232) and Curtis Enis (230), and trails Lydell Mitchell (246) for seventh place.
  • Davis has converted all 49 of his extra point attempts this season to rank tied for sixth nationally and second in the Big Ten.
  • Davis has made the most point after attempts without a career miss in Penn State history, successfully converting 122 straight. Only two others, Herb Menhardt (54-for-54; 1978-80) and Collin Wagner (83-for-83; 2007-10), have had perfect career percentages (minimum 50 attempts).
  • Davis is one of six active kickers in FBS with at least 100 extra points without a career miss.
  • Davis is Penn State's career record holder for field goal accuracy. Davis has converted 38-of-47 field goal attempts for an 80.9 percent success rate. Nick Gancitano (1981-83) was the previous record holder  with a 77.6 percent success rate (38-of-49).
  • Davis moved into ninth place on the career field goals list at Michigan State, tying Nick Gancitano (38; 1981-84) for the position.
  • Davis booted a career-long 47-yard field goal in the third quarter against Akron. His previous best was a 42-yard kick against Illinois in 2015.
  • Davis is handling kickoff duties full-time this season for the first time in his career.

MIGHT AS WELL PUNT

  • P Blake Gillikin's 43.3-yard punting average ranks third in the Big Ten and 32nd in FBS.
  • Penn State's punt return defense has netted an average of 4.29 yards allowed, good enough to rank third in the Big Ten and 25th in FBS.
  • Penn State's net punting average of 39.64 yards ranks second in the Big Ten and 27th in FBS.
  • Gillikin had three punts inside the Rutgers 10-yard line, giving him 15 this season and 22 in his career.
  • Gillikin had one punt of 50-plus yards against Rutgers (53 yards). It was the 23rd 50-yard punt of his career and the 10th of the season.

 

 

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