Penn State walked out of Columbus on Saturday with a 13-6 win over then-ranked No. 10 Ohio State for the first time in 30 years to become 9-0 and solidify themselves as a premier contender in the national championship hunt.
Excitement broke out through all of State College, with riots occurring downtown extending throughout the night and into Sunday morning. The first 9-0 start since 1999 gave fans the feeling that something great was beginning to happen.
Not so fast.
The season isn’t over for another four weeks for Joe Paterno’s talented team. Their remaining three games do not appear to be too challenging—two of which are at home. But don’t book tickets in Miami just yet.
Iowa is next in line to see the explosive Penn State offense firsthand. With a dynamite running back like Shonn Greene, the Hawkeye offense is not one to be taken lightly. They average over 195 yards a game on the ground, second in the Big Ten only to Penn State. If you take a look back at the Penn State Michigan game in State College, the inept Wolverine offense managed over 200 yards rushing against a tough Nittany Lion defense, while they average only 133 yards a game for the whole season.
Shonn Greene himself averages 144 yards on the ground.
Oh, and Penn State won’t have 110,000 fans on their side, either. They will be at Kinnick Stadium against a team who, in their three losses, lost by an average of three points. The Hawkeyes even smeared the Wisconsin Badgers by a much larger margin than the Nittany Lions did.
So is it a ‘trap’ game? Maybe. Penn State doesn’t have the best record against conference foes on the road, but this year, the explosive Spread HD offense and dominant defense make it difficult to bet against.
But with a 5-3 record, Iowa will be looking forward to knocking off a top team en route to a bowl game as well as a top 25 finish. The crowd will be energized for the game, and Penn State better be ready.
Or else the Nittany Lion faithful will have booked tickets to the wrong bowl game.