Penn State Predictions: Bowl edition
It’s bowl season.
The Nittany Lions finished the regular season with three consecutive wins and an overall record of 10-2. While the Lions are on the outside looking in at the College Football Playoff, Penn State will land in a very good bowl game.
The bowl matchups will be announced on Sunday afternoon.
Michael Kresovich, sports intern
Orange Bowl – Penn State vs. Miami
Penn State concluded its 2017 regular season campaign with a 66-3 stomping of Maryland this past weekend. The win moved the Nittany Lions to No. 9 in the college football rankings, but still on the outside looking in. Due to Miami losing to Pittsburgh last week in a shocking fashion, I can see Penn State playing Miami and renewing the once gritty rivalry. The two could match-up and battle in the Orange Bowl. If not the Orange Bowl, I could see the Nittany Lions matching up with either Notre Dame or USC in the Citrus.
Matt Lingerman, sports intern
Cotton Bowl – Penn State vs. Notre Dame
While Penn State's chances of playing in its first College Football Playoff are now non-existent, the Nittany Lions still have a chance to be a part of a matchup on New Year's Day. A very real – and intriguing – possibility is that Penn State will take on Notre Dame in the 2018 Cotton Bowl in Arlington, Texas. The game would feature two of the sports most storied programs after seasons in which both had national title aspirations ripped away down the stretch. What better way to finish the season than rekindling an old rivalry in one of the nation's most historic bowl games?
Chris Morelli, managing editor
Cotton Bowl – Penn State vs. TCU
The Cotton Bowl has big-time interest in Penn State. As we all know, Nittany Nation travels extremely well, so going to a bowl that the Nittany Lions haven’t been to in a very long time seems like a no-brainer. I can’t see a three-loss Notre Dame team making it to the Cotton Bowl (darn it), so let’s go with TCU as an opponent. Oh by the way, that’s a pretty good bowl matchup. Both teams have plenty of weapons on the offensive side of the ball, so it could be a good made-for-TV high-scoring affair.
John Patishnock, beat writer
Cotton Bowl – Penn State vs. Auburn
A third all-time matchup between the Nittany Lion and Tigers in a bowl game would result in an explosive matchup on the field — and gaudy television numbers. Penn State and Auburn will play a home-and-home series in 2021–22, and the game would pit Penn State against former offensive line coach Herb Hand, now coaching the same position for Auburn. Two of many storylines that the game would have. Auburn bested Alabama a few weeks ago and boasts the same 10-2 record that Penn State also has, as the Nittany Lions have completed consecutive 10-win seasons. The game is set for an 8:30 p.m. kickoff on Dec. 29, at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, the home of the Dallas Cowboys. The stadium itself would be part of the story, similar to last year's Rose Bowl, and give a great backdrop for Nittany Lion fans who will likely flock to Penn State's bowl destination.
Abbi Sales, sports intern
Cotton Bowl – Penn State vs. TCU
The Nittany Lions have a pretty good chance to land in the Cotton Bowl. The last time Penn State played in the Cotton Bowl was on Jan. 1, 1975, where they faced the Baylor Bears and won 41-20. If that's where the boys end up, I believe they will face TCU. Auburn is another candidate predicted for the Cotton Bowl. Both of the teams projected to play Penn State hold the same record, 10-2, making it a fierce battle to be fought. We will know for sure on Sunday. Texas would not be a bad place for the Nittany Lions wind up.