PSU season snapshot: 1996

Year: 1996

Coach: Joe Paterno

Final record: 11-2

Final ranking: AP No. 7, USA Today/CNN No. 7

Regular-season wins: USC, Louisville, Northern Illinois, Temple, Wisconsin, Purdue, Indiana, Northwestern, Michigan, Michigan State

Regular-season losses: Ohio State, Iowa

Bowl game: Beat Texas, 38-15, in the Fiesta Bowl

Team stat leaders: Curtis Enis rushed for 1,210 yards and 13 TDs; Wally Richardson passed for 1,732 yards; Joe Jurevicius caught 41 passes for 869 yards; Brett Conway made 18 of 24 field goal attempts; Gerald Filardi had 96 tackles; Brandon Noble had 8 sacks; Kim Herring intercepted 7 passes

All-American: S Kim Herring

Neil Rudel’s take: The Lions opened and closed the season in decisive fashion, dominating USC in the Kickoff Classic behind bullish Curtis Enis and crushing Texas in the Fiesta Bowl to finish 11-2 and No. 7 in the country. The win over the Longhorns included Chafie Fields’ electrifying 84-yard reverse. In between, however, while ranked No. 4, PSU couldn’t have laid a bigger egg in getting blown out, 38-7, at No. 3 Ohio State. It was an unfortunate pattern in the Horseshoe. A 21-20 home loss to Iowa, on a long punt return by Tim Dwight, was the second setback before closing the season with five-straight wins. Enis rushed for 1210 yards and led the offense and Kim Herring earned All-America honors at safety.


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