Penn State vs. Iowa fearless prediction and game preview.
Penn State vs. Iowa Broadcast
Date: Saturday, October 12
Game Time: 7:30 ET
Venue: Kinnick Stadium, Iowa City, IA
Penn State (5-0) vs. Iowa (4-1) Game Preview
Why Penn State Will Win
No one has played better over the last two weeks.
Okay, so the Nittany Lions faced Maryland and Purdue, but they’ve been flawless as they’ve been building and building throughout the tune-ups to get ready for what’s coming.
Before dealing with Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota and Ohio State, the brutal run starts against an Iowa team that was exposed a bit by Michigan. The Hawkeye offense wasn’t bad against the Middle Tennessee’s and Rutgers’ of the world, but it stalled against Iowa State and kept tripping over itself against Michigan last week.
Hawkeye QB Nate Stanley struggled with Michigan’s pressure, and now he has to deal with the nation’s No. 1 defense in sacks and tackles for loss.
No, the schedule hasn’t been all that tough so far, but Penn State has done with it what it’s supposed to – it’s holding everyone to under than 14 points per game.
On the other side, Sean Clifford has been terrific as he grows into the starting quarterback role. He’s hitting the big downfield passes, he’s not making massive mistakes, and he’s keeping the offense rolling.
Why Iowa Will Win
It’s hard to score when you don’t have the ball.
Penn State is able to score quickly, but it’s not controlling the clock and it’s not great on third downs. It hasn’t had to deal with a whole lot of stress or drama so far – the close call against Pitt is it – and now the defense has to finally deal with an offense that’s got a sharp veteran quarterback.
Stanley might have had a rocky day against Michigan, but he still threw for 260 yards and kept the team in the game. He and the Hawkeye own the clock, keeping the ball for close to 36 minutes per game – only Wisconsin is better in the time of possession world – helped by a defense that’s brilliant on key downs and great at getting off the field.
Yeah, Penn State has a defense, but Iowa has one, too. The difference is that the Hawkeyes had have to deal with Iowa State and Michigan.
Outside of the interceptions in last week’s game, this isn’t a team that makes a whole lot of mistakes. It doesn’t get hit with penalties, it doesn’t beat itself, and it has a knack for coming up with the big play down the field at the right time.
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What’s Going To Happen
Will everything that happened this week with the dreadlock-letter controversy focus an already sharp and charged-up Penn State team? It’s certainly not going to hurt the team’s intensity level.
So was the Michigan game a blip for the Hawkeyes, or was that what the team really is against the better teams?
Penn State has won five straight in the series – including in each of the last three seasons – going back to 2010. It’s not going to stop here.
The Nittany Lions will have to muck it up in a tight, physical battle. The difference will be their pass rush – it’ll bother Stanley just enough to stall the Hawkeye offense as the game goes on.
Don’t expect another uggo like the Michigan-Iowa game. It’ll be intense.
Penn State vs. Iowa Prediction, Line
Penn State 20, Iowa 17
Bet on PSU vs. Iowa with BetMGM, or for latest line
Iowa -3.5, o/u: 40.5
ATS Confidence out of 5: 1
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Must See Rating: 4
5: Uncut Gems
1: ABC Cast From the Past Week