Penn State Football: 5 Players Key to Beating Wisconsin
Penn State has relied on their top defense to win games this season. Nothing will change when they travel to Wisconsin to battle for a Big Ten championship bid.
The No. 19 Nittany Lions must get the best out of their impact players to push past the No. 16 Wisconsin Badgers for their tenth win of the season and secure the Leaders Division.
It has been a rough month for PSU, but they can still finish strong and on a positive note. Here are five players who must play well for the Nittany Lions to win in Week 13.
Penn State's defense has dominated due to Devon Still's forceful play on the interior of the line. He's quick off the snap—he'll have to be on Saturday to stay in the face of Wisconsin QB Russell Wilson.
The senior quarterback has been efficient for the Badgers this season, but Still will make sure he doesn't have an easy day. The defense lineman has had a huge year and he's in the running for several defensive awards.
If Still somehow doesn't show up in what is potentially his last collegiate game, Montee Ball and James White will step up and lead their team to the Big Ten title game. However, if Still does dominate, he will pile up the tackles for loss.
Wisconsin's defense is stingy and underrated, meaning Matt McGloin will haves his hands full. He will rely heavily on the running game, but he must make plays when he has the opportunity.
Turnovers will be the story of this matchup and McGloin can't make too many mistakes.
One advantage to Joe Paterno's firing is that PSU now has an official starting quarterback and Rob Bolden won't be playing in this one. It is Matt McGloin's time to shine and this will be the biggest game of his career.
If the Nittany Lions can't find a way to run the ball and control the clock, their season is sure to end prematurely. Starting tailback Silas Redd hasn't been very healthy of late and Stephfon Greene has been forced to carry the load.
He played well in last week's win over Ohio State, with 93 yards and two scores, and he'll have to do just as good or better to beat Wisconsin.
The Nittany Lions are 106th in the nation in points per game, meaning scoring doesn't come easy. This makes every kick by Anthony Fera extremely important.
Fera has connected on 82.4% of his field goal attempts this season, but Penn State can't afford any misses on Saturday.
Even extra points will be crucial to keep the Badgers at bay.
If Penn State's defense hopes to slow down Wisconsin's tenth ranked rushing attack, Gerald Hodges will have to continue to play like the monster he's been.
His physical presence is a huge boost to the linebacker corps and he must make some noise in the Badgers' backfield.
Containing Montee Ball will be PSU's main objective and Hodges has to be a tackling machine to keep Ball's yardage totals low.