What you need to know: No. 12 Penn State at Maryland
UNIVERSITY PARK — Each week, we’ll tell you what to expect, what to keep an eye on, and where and when you can catch the Nittany Lions on fall Saturdays this season.
Game details: at Maryland, 3:30 p.m. kickoff, broadcast on BTN.
Records: Penn State 9-2, 6-2 Big Ten, Maryland 4-7, 2-6 Big Ten.
Venue: Capital One Field at Maryland Stadium, capacity 54,000.
Weather forecast (via AccuWeather): High of 56 degrees, with periods of clouds and sun.
Overview: Maryland is allowing 34.5 points per game. You can almost stop the analysis there, along with any chance Maryland has to win. The Terrapins stayed close to the Spartans last week (losing 17-7), though they’ve dropped six of their last seven conference games, after opening Big Ten play with a win over Minnesota. Maryland’s not at a point where it can compete with the elite teams in the Big Ten, and Penn State’s eyeing a 10-win season and New Year’s bowl. And after scoring 42 points against Nebraska in the first half, the Nittany Lions should find enough opportunities to score against a suspect Maryland defense.
The line: Penn State –21.
All-time series: Penn State leads 37-2-1, starting in 1917.
Last time they met (2016): Penn State earned a 38-14 win on Homecoming at Beaver Stadium.
Penn State wins if: the Nittany Lions continue the positive energy they’ve created since Maryland players refused to shake hands prior to the 2014 game at Beaver Stadium. Penn State has won the following two games by a combined score of 69-44, and former Maryland coach Randy Edsall is now leading Connecticut, which plays in the American Athletic Conference. The Huskies have a 3-8 record this season.
Maryland wins if: the Terrapins hold Penn State to less than 20 points, which isn’t happening. Penn State’s scored at least 20 in 21 consecutive games, a school record that the team set Saturday. The previous mark was 20 from 1993–95.
Count on: A quasi-hometown crowd for Penn State. In its last three home games, Maryland’s drawn a total of 114,000 fans.
Keep an eye on: Juwan Johnson, Penn State’s receiver of the future. The rising sophomore registered his first 100-yard game on Saturday during Nebraska,
Trivia tidbit: With a win Saturday, Penn State will earn its 23rd season with at least 10 wins.
Saquon Barkley record watch: Barkley
Season record: 10-1.
Season record against the spread: 7-4.
Prediction: Penn State 45, Maryland 17
*HappyValley season predictions