Beaver Stadium – University Park, PA
The Kent State Golden Flashes ended a six-game losing streak dating back to last season when they defeated Howard 54-14 last Saturday. The victory also provided Sean Lewis with his first win as a collegiate head coach.
The Blue and Gold's task this week is much tougher as they visit "Happy Valley" to battle nationally-ranked Penn State. The Nittany Lions are 2-0 on the season after pounding Pittsburgh 51-6 last week in the Steel City,
This is the sixth lifetime meeting between the two schools (all have been played at Penn State), with the Nittany Lions winning their last encounter (2016) 33-14.
KSU is 1-27 lifetime against the Big Ten (0-1 this season, losing at Illinois in the season opener 31-24. Penn State is 25-3 lifetime against the MAC and has played a team from the Mid-American Conference each year since 2009.
PENN STATE NITTANY LIONS (2-0)
>> The Lions are in both national polls (#10 AP-#11 Coaches) this week after their dominating 51-6 win at Pittsburgh before a national television audience.
>> Head Coach James Franklin is in his fifth season at the helm of the program. He has a 38-17 record and led the Lions to the Big Ten championship in 2016. Overall, he is 62-32, including four years at the Vanderbilt helm.
>> PSU's offense is averaging 412 yards through its first two games and is led by senior QB Trace McSorley. One of the early favorites for the Heisman Trophy, McSorley has completed 52.8 percent of his passes for 374 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions. In addition he has rushed for 89 yards and three scores.
>> The running game is led by junior RB Miles Sanders, who registered his first 100-yard rushing game last Saturday, collecting118 yards against the Panthers. He also scored the winning touchdown in overtime in PSU’s 45-38 win over Appalachian State.
>> The receivers are led by senior Jujuan Johnson ,who has eight catches for 90 yards.
>> LB Jan Johnson leads the defense with 16 total tackles (six solo) while freshman LB Micah Parson has 11 total stops, with seven in the win over Pitt
>> The game is the final non-conference game for the Nittany Lions as they open Big Ten play Friday night at home against Illinois
KENT STATE GOLDEN FLASHES (1-1)
>> KSU defeated Howard 54-14 last Saturday at Dix Stadium as Sean Lewis picked up his first win as a collegiate head coach.
> The Flashes' 54 points were the most scored by a KSU team since 2008 against Miami and the most points scored at home since 1996 (51 in a loss to Central Michigan).
>> The Flashes Offense had 511 yards of total offense (355 on the ground) in the 2018 opener.
>> KSU managed to put two running backs over 100 yards against Howard. Junior RB Justin Rankin had a career-best 147 yards, including 61-yard touchdown run in the third quarter. He leads the ground attack with 199 yards on 27 carries. Freshman Jo-El Sha had 105 yards and scored three times in his first FBS game.
>> Overall, sophomore QB Woody Barrett is completing 60.3 percent of his passes, good for 426 yards with three touchdowns. He has also rushed for 135 yards and a pair of scores.
>> Junior WR Mike Carrigan leads receivers with 10 catches for 59 yards.
>> The defense is paced by senior LB Matt Bahr, who had 11 total tackles (eight solo) against the Bison and owns18 total strops through the first two games.
>> Next week, KSU travels to Oxford, Mississippi to battle the Ole Miss Rebels from the SE