Rutgers Welcomes Penn State For Final Home Game of 2016 Season
The Big Ten Rutgers Scarlet Knights will play their last home game of the 2016 season this weekend against their rivals, the Penn State Nittany Lions.
Currently the Scarlet Knights are 2-8, placing them in seventh place in the Eastern Division. The Scarlet Knights have not won a Big Ten game this season.
Penn State’s current season record of 8-2 is the reverse of Rutgers. They have six Big Ten wins so far in the season. Their only Big Ten loss was to Michigan, who shares the same record of 6-1.
Since Rutgers joined the Big Ten two years ago, they lost to Penn State both times they battled each other. The closest game was during the Knights’ first season in the conference. At halftime in the 2014 home game, the Knights were up 10-0. In the third quarter, Penn State got on the board making the score 10-3. With just over a minute left in the game, the Nittany Lions scored a TD, leading them to victory over the Knights and to the despair of RU students and fans.
Last year, many RU fans traveled to watch the game at the home of the Nittany Lions in hopes that the Scarlet Knights would get their revenge. The Knights did not have the same luck in leading at halftime this time around. Instead, the Lions were up 21-0. The final score of that game was 28-3. Once again Penn State had defeated their Big Ten rivals from New Jersey.
This year, Penn State’s starting quarterback is sophomore Trace McSorely. McSorely has 16 touchdowns, with at least one TD scored per game. Last season, QB Christian Hackenberg, now with the NY Jets, ended the season with 16 touchdowns, which means McSorley has a good chance of racking up more TDs than Hackenberg.
Rutgers starting QB, senior Chris Laviano, was replaced midway through the season. Laviano had five TDs this season, three of which were scored in a winning game against Howard. Last season, Laviano had 16 TDs. Current QB, junior Giovanni Rescigno, also has five TDs this season. Both QBs fall well behind the 2014 season of Gary Nova, who had 22 TDs.
Rutgers and Penn State first met on the field in 1918. Rutgers, “the birthplace of college football,” defeated PSU in this match up. The next time the rivals met on the field was 32 years later. Since then, Rutgers has only been successful in beating Penn State one more time, in 1988. The following season began Penn State’s current nine-game winning streak against the Knights.
Penn State is predicted to beat Rutgers once again this season based both on past statistics and standings from the current season. Who knows, maybe the Knights will turn up the heat for their final home game of the season and slaughter the beasts. Anything can happen in football!
Rutgers vs. Penn State is a fan favorite game every Rutgers football season. This rivalry brings students, alumni, and other fans to fill the stadium. The streets of New Brunswick will be crawling with fans dressed in scarlet, as well as opposing fans dressed in blue. This year’s game is definitely a must see.
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