Penn State Predictions: Piling on Pitt

42-39.

If you’re a Penn State fan, that score should stick in your brain. It’s the final from last year’s thrilling Pitt-Penn State game at Heinz Field. Penn State turned the ball over countless times in the first half as the Panthers jumped out to a 28-7 lead. The Nittany Lions stormed back, but they came up short in a loss that would keep them out of the College Football Playoff picture.

According to the staff at HappyValley.com, the Lions should avenge last year’s defeat. Here’s what we see for Week 2:

Michael Kresovich, sports intern (Season record 1-0):  Penn State finished fifth in the College Football Playoff rankings heading into the 2016 bowl season. What kept the Nittany Lions outside of the “Final Four” teams? Its loss to Pitt in Week 2 of the season.

Now things are different. Penn State has certainly established its identity and has one of the most electrifying offenses in the nation.

Expect the Nittany Lions to roll over the Panthers, avenging last year’s loss.

Penn State 44, Pitt 13.

Matt Lingerman, sports intern (Season record 1-0): After a near-perfect performance from the Nittany Lions during week one, expect more of the same from James Franklin's team. Beaver Stadium should be close to capacity, and the Blue and White will exact revenge on its in-state rivals. Pitt lost its most dynamic player, James Conner, to the 2017 NFL Draft, and blew a lead against Youngstown State before barely scraping out a win in week one. This will be a statement game for the Nittany Lions.

Penn State 45, Pitt 7.

Chris Morelli, managing editor (Season record 1-0): Pitt lost an awful lot of talent from last year’s team which knocked off Penn State at Heinz Field. Not having James Conner in the backfield leaves a gaping hole and the Panthers are porous defensively. The rivalry will keep it close for the first quarter, but it’s all Penn State after that.

Penn State 44, Pitt 20.

John Patishnock, beat writer (Season record 1-0): Penn State will win if Trace McSorley completes half of his passes. In other words, a workman-like performance. The Nittany Lions don’t have to play great to win, and Barkley doesn’t need a standout game. He had that last year, and it didn’t matter. As long as McSorley can routinely find his targets, Penn State should be fine.

Penn State 56, Pitt 17.

Abbi Sales, sports intern (Season record 1-0): Although Penn State shut out Akron last weekend, they won't be able to do the same to Pitt. The Nittany Lions are more prepared than last year but this game will be a nailbiter early. This is a battle that shouldn't be missed.

Penn State 48, Pitt 21.

 

 

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