Sean Clifford threw for 178 yards and three touchdowns as No. 4 Penn State beat Indiana 24-0 on Saturday
State College, P. – Penn State defenders get excited when they are asked to defend small areas these days.
After all, this is what the No. 4 Nittany Lions (5-0, 2-0 Big Ten) does best.
Penn State blocked eight punts, two turnovers and a field goal to lift the Nittany Lions to a 24-0 win over Indiana on Saturday.
Shaun Clifford threw for 178 yards and three touchdowns, Jahan Dotson caught a pair of touchdown passes, Brenton Strange added one, and Jordan Stout added a 50-yard field goal in the fourth quarter in the Nittany Lions’ ninth straight win.
Defensive tackle PJ Mustifer said, “We are a defence, no matter what, no matter what the timing of the game, we are going to go out there and play at a high level.” “That’s us. Throughout the game, we’ll keep going.”
Penn State opened the scoring on his second drive when Clifford scrambled left and threw a 10-yard pass to Strange with 5:28 to play in the first quarter.
Rahim Layne blocked Clifford’s pass in the Penn State area in the next possession of the Nittany Lions. Although Layne made it back to 13, the Hoosiers couldn’t crack Penn State’s stout red zone defense. He made four plays in just under 5 to turn the ball down the aisle in the fourth and shorter attempt.
Hoosiers (2-3, 0-2) won’t be able to get close to the end zone for the rest of the night.
Crime also did its part. After the defensive stop, the Nittany Lions responded with their longest drive of the season.
He got a boost from running back Keewon Lee, who took a second-place lead in the middle for 44-yards. He added moments later on a 21-yard run to set Penn State inside 5. Clifford caps off the sequence with a rollout pass to Dotson in the back of the end zone. The scoring toss of 8 yards reduced it to 14-0 with 13:31 to play in the first half.
Indiana’s opening second half ended badly when Penix was sacked by linebacker Brandon Smith. Penix fell on his left shoulder and remained on the ground for a few minutes. He went to the locker room and was replaced by Jack Tuttle.
Indiana coach Tom Allen said after the game that Penix injured his throwing shoulder and would undergo further tests when the team returned home.
Backup was not much better. On his first dropback, Tuttle was sacked hard by Arnold Ebicetti in third place.
Penn State put together another strong drive and extended their lead to 21-0 when Clifford, throwing on the run again, found Dotson cutting inside Indiana’s defense for a 30-yard score.
Tuttle gave Indiana some life when he completed his next three passes for a combined 58 yards, putting his teammates in position to score midway through the third. But the drive stalled, and Smith blocked a 30-yard field goal attempt by Charles Campbell after three plays.
Clifford and Dotson have totaled 18 touchdowns, the most for any QB-WR combo in Penn State history.
The record of 17 was previously held by Todd Blackledge and Kenny Jackson.
Indiana: The Hoosiers played well on the defense and restricted Penn State’s big-play offense to just 14 first-half points. However, offensively, Indiana had little going on. Pennix completed just eight of his first 19 throws for 109 yards and one interception, and no matter who the Indiana QB is leading, if this team wants to make any progress, they have to ask everyone around them. Will need more help.
Penn State: Clifford continued to play well and the Nittany Lions got the most out of their running game by adding Lee. The Penn State defense may have played its best game of the season. Indiana’s offense was suppressed all night, and neither QB had the time or place to throw with any accuracy.
3 Oregon will have room to move forward after falling to unranked Stanford.
Indiana: Host No. 17 Michigan State on October 16.
Penn State: No. 5 in Iowa on Saturday.