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November 13, 2010 - Ray Eckenrode
BETWEEN THE LIONS
HALF AND HALF NOT
Nits put scare into OSU, but fade in final 30 minutes
It was over when:
+ A critical (and correct) holding call put OSU in a 2nd-and-23 from the PSU 42, but Terrelle Pryor’s deep ball for DeVier Posey, perfectly defensed by the PSU secondary, bounced directly into Dane Sanzenbacher’s hands for a Buckeye touchdown and a 24-14 lead.
Play of the day:
+ We can tell you the exact moment the game changed for Matt McGloin. The former walk on was in an unbelievable rhythm early in the game, especially on three-step drops, 1-2-3 boom, 1-2-3 boom. But after sneaking for a key first down on 4th-and-inches with less than three minutes left in the half, McGloin hesitated on a first down slant to Graham Zug – 1-2-3 pause incomplete – and was never the same in the game.
+ Aside from the tipped pass for a touchdown, PSU also was victimized by four more key injuries in the second half of the game as linebacker Michael Mauti and running backs Stephfon Green, Evan Royster and Michael Zordich, all missed some or all of the action after halftime. It’s hard to imagine there’s ever been a Penn State team (and maybe a college team, period) that’s been so decimated by injuries in a season.
+ For our money, McGloin should still be the PSU starter, no questions asked. The first pick six was a great read by the OSU corner and the second was a ball he had to force while trailing in the game. If Devon Smith would have caught a third-quarter, third-down bomb McGloin put right in his hands, you might be reading a different blog right now.
Paralysis by analysis:
+ Brent Musburger and the ABC production crew were very good early, quickly putting PSU’s first-half performance at the Horseshoe into historical perspective.
+ We chuckled early when Musburger claimed the Big Ten has sent “one of their better crews,” but we’ll be darned if it didn't turn out to be a well officiated contest.
And now a word from our sponsors :
+ The Allstate Mayhem commercials are very well done, We’d like to go back and see the first few again because we really weren’t paying attention to the concept at that point.
@CaptainClark17 (Darryl Clark): You have no idea how excited I am about this game today ... shock the world baby.
@sjflynn: ABC, stop saying MOXIE when referring to McGloin. Thanks.
@15MinutesBlog: PSU offensive coaches have suddenly gotten a lot smarter with McGloin at quarterback.
@15MinutesBlog: Four key injuries and now that! Karma is wearing a gray vest tonight.
We were right:
+ Penn State’s offense was ready to surprise against Ohio State and the Lions’ defense alternated between stout and sieve like.
We were wrong:
+ Of course, the two defensive touchdowns ensured PSU wouldn’t cover the 18.5-point spread. Hopefully, you did the smart thing and bet the other way.