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Buckeyes Battle Back to Beat Nittany Lions

Special to CFN
Posted Nov 13, 2010


The following is a live journal composed during the Penn State/Ohio State game.


Author's E-mail: aaron.calhoun451@gmail.com

PREGAME

Joe Paterno, fresh off win #400, looks to take down Ohio State and muddy up the race for the Big Ten championship even more after Iowa’s upset loss at Northwestern.

FIRST QUARTER

13:33 – DeVier Posey plain outruns his cover man, D’Anton Lynn, and hauls in a Terelle Pryor offering for a 49-yard gain; the Buckeyes are in business early.

3-0 Ohio State

6:43 – Both defenses have clamped down in the last seven minutes, but the Nittany Lions are utilizing a lot of quick screens to put a nice drive together…

6:22 – ... and it continues after a successful 4th and 1 conversion.

4:10 – Lion QB Matt McGloin was nails on the drive; he made three confident throws into tight spaces while under duress; the last one to Justin Brown was released as he was hit, but Brown hauled it in for the first touchdown pass a Penn State team coached by Joe Paterno has ever thrown in the Horseshoe—and first overall since 1963.

7-3 Penn State

1:14 – McGloin is just shredding the Ohio State secondary so far; he just threw a bullet to Brett Brackett on an inside slant for sixteen yards and is 7/9.

END FIRST QUARTER. PENN STATE LEADS 7-3.

SECOND QUARTER

12:49 – An easy pass interference call on Devon Torrence, but if the Lion receiver hadn’t thrown his hands up before the ball got to him, he might have made the touchdown catch anyway…

11:23 - … but that becomes a moot point as McGloin hits Derek Moye between three Buckeye defenders for his second passing TD. Penn State is making history as this marks the first time a Joe Pa team has scored at least two touchdowns in the Horseshoe.

14-3 Penn State

9:24 – The Lions are doing a good job of keeping Pryor in the pocket; every time he’s rolled out, there has been a defender in his face.

5:23 – The Buckeyes cannot defend the screen; of course, McGloin is 12/15, so they haven’t really been able to defend any type of pass. Stephfon Green takes a short pass for twenty-seven yards and gets into Ohio State territory.

1:41 – The third time was not the charm for Penn State; after two successful fourth down conversions, Silas Redd is stuffed on 4th and 1. The Nittany Lions might miss those three points later, but if they keep playing the way they have in the first half, then that’s not likely.

0:44 – BREAKING NEWS: The Buckeyes can defend the screen pass.

HALFTIME. PENN STATE LEADS 14-3.

Matt McGloin is dialed in: 13/18 in the first half with two touchdowns. Ohio State needs to tighten up its pass coverage or get more penetration for the D-Line or McGloin is going to have a field day. On the other side, Terrelle Pryor isn’t being given much time to work, so the Buckeyes’ chances may fall on the shoulders of running backs Dan Herron and Brandon Saine, who have been the best offensive weapons for the team so far.

THIRD QUARTER

12:42 – Penn State was offering more of the same to start the second half, but too many deep shots were called and the drive fizzled because of that; at the very least, Ohio State will at its own four yard line.

6:33 – At the very most, though, the Buckeyes could get their running game going, give Pryor more time in the backfield, and get a 96-yard scoring drive. Naturally, I wouldn’t waste time listing those things if they didn’t actually happen.

14-10 Penn State

4:29 – Torrence had been picked on all day, but he picks off McGloin and gets his revenge by taking to the house. The Lions are missing that field goal now.

17-14 Ohio State

2:49 – Devon Smith plain whiffs on perfect fade pass from McGloin on 3rd and 12; that would’ve been a huge conversion for Penn State and swung the momentum back to them.

0:08 – Great quarter for Ohio State; it got its running game going and got a big play on defense. Penn State still has McGloin to throw passes though, so anything can happen in the final fifteen minutes.

END THIRD QUARTER. OHIO STATE LEADS 17-14.

FOURTH QUARTER

12:45 – Pryor had a man open downfield, but he waited a half-second to long and gave Malcolm Willis enough time to recover and intercept the ball at the Buckeye 2. Do the Lions have a 90+ yard drive of their own in them?

11:21 – No, McGloin sees another bullet hit his man in the numbers and then the ground; Penn State’s receivers have really cost the team in the second half.

9:58 – Wow. On 2nd and 23, Pryor throws into double coverage, the ball is tipped, and it falls right into the hands of Dane Sanzenbacher for a Buckeye touchdown.

24-14 Ohio State

8:57 – That will most likely do it as the Buckeyes take back another interception for a touchdown; this time, Travis Howard jumps a route and takes a clear route to the goal line.

31-14 Ohio State

7:09 – The Lions have no answer for the Buckeyes’ run game anymore—and they haven’t really had one for Dan Herron all day; they’re just too shell shocked over the twenty-eight unanswered points that they are only half responsible for.

3:58 – Slowly, but surely, this has turned into a blowout as Pryor hits Jake Stoneburner on a roll out for another touchdown.

38-14 Ohio State

0:36 – The Buckeyes run out the clock with little resistance—no surprise there after the events that transpired in the second half.

GAME OVER. OHIO STATE WINS 38-14.

FINAL THOUGHTS

It’s hard to believe Ohio State trailed by double digits at halftime, but when your star quarterback doesn’t have any time or room to operate, there’s going to be trouble. Fortunately, the Buckeyes turned that around in the second half and also got a couple of big defensive plays. Most notable should be the performance of running back Dan Herron, who ran for 190 yards and took a lot of pressure off of Pryor as his total mounted up.

Matt McGloin played on a different level in the first half, but came down to earth in the final half hour. Yes, there were some drops, but there were also overthrows and pick-sixes—all-in-all, McGloin was only 2/13 in the second half. Penn State’s defense, brilliant in the first half in only giving up a field goal, faltered in the final two quarters and contributing just as much to the thirty-five unanswered points the Nittany Lions gave up as McGloin’s interceptions. It looked good early, but Joe Paterno just couldn’t come up with win #401.

One of his teams finally scored two touchdowns at the Horseshoe, though; I suppose that’s something.

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