Penn State vs. Illinois score: Illini upset No. 7 Nittany Lions in first 9OT game in FBS history

Illinois upset No. 7 Penn State, 20-18, within the first nine-overtime recreation in FBS historical past on Saturday afternoon. After each groups struggled to place factors on the board throughout regulation, the sport went to time beyond regulation tied 10-10. They traded area objectives within the first two time beyond regulation durations earlier than going to a 3rd time beyond regulation the place college football‘s new time beyond regulation guidelines took over.

The Illini and Nittany Lions had been compelled to commerce two-point conversion makes an attempt beginning within the third time beyond regulation. They went 5 straight durations with out both staff discovering the top zone earlier than each scored within the eighth time beyond regulation. Illinois transformed to open the ninth time beyond regulation, and Penn State was unable to match the guests on its closing try.

It is a rule change was designed with participant security in thoughts. The purpose was to make sure there could be fewer performs and alternatives for harm as soon as regulation expired. What the rule makers didn’t depend on was a pair offenses too inept to attain.

By the point the sport got here to an finish, Illinois was right down to its No. 2 quarterback Brandon Peters as starter Artwork Sitkowski was certainly injured in time beyond regulation. It was additionally with out its high two operating backs. Nonetheless, regardless of the loopy state of affairs, it is onerous to argue the Illini did not need to win the sport.

Illinois completed with 395 yards of offense, holding Penn State to 227 yards on the afternoon. The Illini additionally had two operating backs end with over 100 yards speeding as Chase Brown rushed for 223 yards and a rating and Josh McCray posted 142 yards.

The win improves Illinois to 3-5 and drops Penn State to 5-2. The Nittany Lions are actually on the skin of the School Soccer Playoff dialog, struggling a troublesome loss to an unranked opponent only one week earlier than Penn State visits No. 5 Ohio State for a rivalry showdown.

Terrible search for Penn State

The Nittany Lions had been 24-point favorites on this recreation, and dropping to a 2-5 staff as a 24-point favourite is rarely good. It is even worse whenever you’re coming off a bye and had an additional week to organize for the sport. The Nittany Lions had been off final week following a loss to Iowa two weeks in the past and had additional time to organize for an Illini staff that misplaced 24-0 to Wisconsin its final day trip.

All that preparation resulted in 18 factors, 227 yards of offense and three.6 yards per play. Granted, quarterback Sean Clifford was clearly lower than 100%. Clifford left the Iowa loss early as a consequence of harm however was deemed wholesome sufficient to play Saturday. Sadly, you would see every time he threw a go or took a success that he was feeling the consequences, which helps clarify why he might solely full 19 of 34 passes for 165 yards.

Nonetheless, there isn’t any excuse for Penn State dropping this recreation and looking out this unprepared. Illinois turned the ball over 3 times within the recreation, together with twice in its personal territory, however Penn State could not take benefit. It managed one area purpose off the turnovers, and people had been the one factors the Nittany Lions picked up in two journeys into the pink zone.

You may’t assist however imagine Penn State used its bye as additional time to organize for subsequent week’s recreation towards Ohio State fairly than the opponent it had first.

It’s essential to be capable to run the ball

After Penn State knocked off Auburn 28-20 earlier this season, I wrote that Penn State’s speeding assault was a priority. After speeding for less than 2.8 yards per carry towards Wisconsin, the Nittany Lions managed solely 2.7 per carry towards Auburn. “I am unable to assist however imagine there’s going to be a time when it wants however shall be unable to run, and it will price PSU a recreation.” Sure, I am quoting myself.

Properly, it is price PSU twice now. The Nittany Lions had been held to three.2 yards per carry of their loss to Iowa, and Saturday, the Illini held them to 2.1 yards per carry. With Clifford banged up (and out towards Iowa), Penn State wanted a run recreation to lean on to assist transfer the ball, and it by no means confirmed up. With the ability to run the ball would’ve come in useful throughout all these overtimes when Penn State could not rating.

Illinois gained regardless of throwing for 38 yards

Not solely did Illinois go on the street and upset a top-10 staff, it did so regardless of passing for less than 38 yards and ending -3 within the turnover column. How’d the Illini do it? By operating the dang ball. Brown and McCray rushed for over 100 yards with Brown going over 200 yards for the second time this season. Coming into the sport, solely Wisconsin’s Chez Mellusi and Auburn’s Tank Bigsby managed to crack the 100-yard barrier towards this Penn State protection. It was considerably apparent that Penn State missed defensive sort out P.J. Mustipher in the course of its line.

In fact, Illinois was in a position to run the ball so efficiently as a result of it had no different selection. The Illini have such little religion of their quarterbacks — Sitkowski began, however Peters has began most of Illinois’ video games this season — that on a third-and-6 in time beyond regulation, the Illini opted to run a double-reverse go with their extensive receiver throwing to Sitkowski.

Each time a staff would fairly have a large receiver throwing a third-down go than its quarterback, nicely, it tells you all the pieces that you must know in regards to the staff’s degree of confidence in its quarterback.

New time beyond regulation guidelines are a failure

This is not a grievance. I am not commenting the leisure worth of the format. I am merely saying, nicely, it is silly to finish a soccer recreation on this matter. Even when each groups transformed their makes an attempt, it might’ve been simply as silly to maintain going. It is a rule carried out for honorable causes, however there was nothing improper with the time beyond regulation format school soccer was already utilizing.

Prolonged overtimes had been so few and much between, that the game — as well-intentioned as it might have been — fastened an issue that didn’t want an answer. There have been solely six seven-overtime video games in FBS historical past getting into Saturday. Most get ended after a pair durations with outliers extermely uncommon. | Penn State vs. Illinois rating: Illini upset No. 7 Nittany Lions in first 9OT recreation in FBS historical past


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