OSU: Game Review

The Nittany Lions squander their best first half performance of the year and are trounced by the Buckeyes in Columbus.

FIRST QUARTER

The Lions opted to go on defense first, and Fera's opening kickoff sailed over the head of the Buckeye return unit and into the end zone. Ohio State began their drive from the 20. After two runs moved the ball to the OSU 38, Pryor uncorked a deep bomb toward the right side of the field and picked up 50 yards to the Penn State 12. From there, the Lion defense stiffened, and forced the Buckeyes to settle for a 26 yard field goal. Ohio State 3, Penn State 0.

Penn State also began their first drive from their own 20, and after an incomplete pass on first down, Royster carried for 7 yards, then came up just short of the sticks on his third down carry. The Lions were forced to punt after a 3 and out, and Ohio State took a fair catch on their own 34.

The Lion defense turned up the pressure, and held the Buckeye offense to a 3 and out, and a shanked punt set up the Penn State offense at their own 34. Two quick outs to the left side moved the chains for the Lions for the first time, and a run right moved the line of scrimmage to midfield. Royster's third down catch came up just short at the Buckeye 45, but Paterno's offense opted to go for it, and a Royster run off tackle left moved the chains. Four plays later, including 3 McGloin completions, the Lions hit paydirt as Justin Brown hauled in a pressured pass in the right flat for the score. Penn State 7, Ohio State 3.

On the next Buckeye drive, after Pryor picked up a first down with his feet, the defense again stiffened and forced another Ohio State punt. This one backed up the Lions into the shadow of their own end zone, and a penalty made matters worse. From the 10 yard line, Royster picked up 4 on first and 16, and then McGloin hit Brackett at the 33 to get out of the hole. Redd escaped around the left end to move the markers again, thi time to midfield, and a quick out to Moye for 7 yards would bring the first quarter to an end with the Lions on the move. Penn State 7, Ohio State 3.

Second Quarter

Mixing Redd, Royster, and a crisp quick passing game, the Lions moved the ball to the Buckeye 24. After a pass interference call on Ohio State's Devon Torrance, the Lions were set up first and goal at the Buckeye 8. After two quick plunges by Royster netted just 2 yards, McGloin went back to the air, this time connecting with Moye on a short post to extend the Lion lead. Penn State 14, Ohio State 3.

On the ensuing kickoff, a penalty on the return backed up the Buckeyes inside their own 10 yard line, but a pair of runs moved the ball out to the 20 before Herron broke free around the left end to reach midfield. Again the Lions stiffened, sacking Pryor on third down to smother the Ohio State drive at the 47.

After the Buckeye punt sailed into the end zone, the Lions took over again from the 20, and picked up a first down on a crisp pass from McGloin to Moye. Mixing pass and run, Penn State quickly crossed midfield again on a third down screen to Stephfon Green. A third and 2 came up short on the Buckeye 29, but again, Paterno opted to go, and again the gamble was rewarded as McGloin dove forward for the first down. Three plays later, Royster again came up one yard short, and again Paterno rolled the dice, but this time the Buckeye defense sniffed out a Silas Redd run and stopped the Lion offense at the 20.

Ohio State was unable to pick up ten yards after coming up with the big stop, and the Buckeyes were forced to kick back to the Lions with 59 seconds remaining in the half. Brown took a fair catch at the 24, and McGloin came out firing, but a failed screen to Royster went nowhere on first down. The Lions went conservative with a run off tackle by Royster, and time expired with the score Penn State 14, Ohio State 3.

Third Quarter

After the kickoff return, the Lions set up at their own 25, but a penalty moved them back to the 20. Royster picked the 5 yards back up on a first down carry, and McGloin hit Justin Brown again to move the markers. Stephfon Green picked up another first down near midfield, but the drive fizzled out just across the midfield stripe, and the Lions were forced to punt. An excellent kick and good coverage downfield pinned Ohio State at their own 3 yard line.

After nearly being bottled up inside their own 15, Herron escaped for a couple of first down runs by Herron before crossing midfield on a fake handoff, run up the gut by Pryor. Pryor's playmaking ability seemed to give the Buckeye offense new life, as they drove deep into the red zone, then scored on a Herron run up the gut. Penn State 14, Ohio State 10.

On the kickoff, Powell was only able to return to the Penn State 15, and Green, while throwing a block, was knocked to the turf for several minutes before leaving for the locker room on a cart. Royster and Redd alternated carries to move the ball to the 35, but McGloin tossed an ill advised pass in the direction of Devon Torrence, who picked it and returned it to give the Buckeyes a go ahead touchdown. Ohio State 17, Penn State 14.

After the kickoff, the Buckeyes bottled up two Redd runs, and Devon Smith dropped a first down pass in his hands. The Lions were forced to punt, and after a holding penalty on the return, the Buckeye offense set up at their own 34. Ohio State picked up yardage on the ground, and the quarter came to an end with the Buckeyes picking up first and 10 at the Penn State 35 yard line.

Fourth Quarter

The quarter began with more of the same, as Dan Herron, averaging 8.5 yards per carry, rushed twice to pick up another first down at the 23. Then the Lions got a break as Malcolm Willis picked off a Terrell Pryor pass at the 1 yard line. The Lions were unable to move, however, and Fera's punt from the end zone rolled dead at the Penn State 45.

Following a holding call that pushed the Buckeyes back onto the Penn State side of the field, Terrell Pryor unleashed a 50 yard pass that bounced off the hands of a Nittany Lion defender who had excellent coverage, and landed in the hands of Sanzenbacher, who scored for the Buckeyes. Ohio State 24, Penn State 14.

On the ensuing drive, a desparate McGloin heaved a 3rd and 8 pass into deep coverage, and gave up his second pick 6 of the day. Ohio State 31, Penn State 14.

From there, the rout was on, as the Buckeyes padded their lead against an increasingly desparate Nittany Lion team. Ohio State scored one more time to bring the final score to 38-14.

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