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Saquon Barkley turned in an eye-catching performance in win over Iowa

25 September 2017

Penn State's James Franklin hasn't coached at Kinnick Stadium before - but he knows how unsafe the Hawkeyes can be at home after dark.

The Nittany Lions called timeout before the final play.

Starting this week against IN, IN a game PSU is favored by 18.

The Nittany Lions outplayed Iowa in the first half, racking up 4.7 yards per play to the Hawkeyes' 2.2 and holding the ball nine minutes more than they did. But that could play to the Hawkeyes' advantage.

After a short throw, then a pair of incompletions, Penn State faced fourth-and-goal with four seconds left. The fifth? It was the game-winner.

In a game that was dominated by the defenses, the teams scored three fourth-quarter touchdowns.

Penn State had to convert a fourth down and two from their 40-yard line.

What a difference a year makes.

Keys to the Game vs Iowa
If this game was during the day, I may be more inclined to take Penn State and the points, but night games add another dimension. Penn State had been on the other end of this situation before, with Chad Henne hitting Mario Manningham in Ann Arbor.

The former IN high school standout entered Penn State with sub-4.7 40-yard-dash speed and his long strides coupled with his cutting ability made him a good dual-threat candidate to lead Moorhead's offense.

Iowa has a 10-4 record all-time under the lights at Kinnick Stadium, including wins in the four games it has hosted at night in the past two seasons.

Penn State 15, Iowa 7: The Hawkeyes were driving before Wadley fumbled, and Grant Haley recovered for PSU.

"I'm actually going to talk to our guys about it being a really, really nice gesture by the University of Iowa to welcome Penn State, since our original school colors are pink and black, and how wonderful it is and what a wonderful gesture it is that they painted their locker room pink for us".

This week Penn State will be on the road in a tough environment against a Big Ten rival with plenty at stake. The ticket price of $95 was the highest in Iowa history. They've got big, strong athletes. Even when holes haven't there for Barkley he has simply burned team through the air, hauling in 11 catches for 241 yards and two touchdowns so far.

The two losses put the Hawkeyes on the bottom of the Big Ten, and they will try to start their climb up that hill in MI next weekend.

After the game, Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz's reaction was disappointment with a soul-wrenching loss mixed with pride over the fight.

No. 6 Washington opened the season with an uninspiring victory against Rutgers. Gameday has since chosen to overtake Times Square in New York City where people may not be aware the state has any college football teams.

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He'll be better in the future because of the experience he gained against an aggressive Penn State defense which tested Stanley physically and mentally. The Hawkeyes recently lost 0-3 to Loyola University Chicago, and they open up Big Ten play against Penn State on September 22. Penn State survived, end of story.

The preseason all-American played like one against Penn State.

Take the turn of events before halftime, for example.

He threw them mostly underneath Iowa's defense Saturday night, which was fine because it gave Saquon Barkley a chance to rumble and jump and dance.

Not a bad night's work for the senior linebacker whose work was complemented by terrific play from Anthony Nelson, who had 2.5 sacks, broke up two passes, blocked a kick and had a quarterback hurry, and by the career-high 13-tackle starting debut of Amani Hooker.

"We have that dog in us, that never-quit mentality", he said.

This much we know about No. 8 MI at Purdue (3 p.m., Fox-32): Boilermakers quarterback David Blough has played far better than Wolverines counterpart Wilton Speight. "We're real close. We're like brothers". Thelen played just three sets, but it was her timeliness that proved key.

So rarely does the sport allow us to focus on something beyond the actual results. We made an emphasis on that over the off-season. "We don't mind playing backyard football". It's one of the best there is.

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Saquon Barkley turned in an eye-catching performance in win over Iowa