There is plenty to dissect and discuss after Penn State got an ugly win against Indiana on Saturday.
Based on talent discrepancy, the fact that the game ended 33-24 is completely unacceptable. Even more so considering it was tied at 24 with three minutes remaining in the game.
Still, a win is a win and the Nittany Lions are now sitting at 7-1 on the year.
Taking a further look into things from the game, here are some key stats from Penn State’s victory over Indiana at Beaver Stadium.
Penn State finished the game going 39% on third down. That’s just not good enough for a team that wants to compete for Big Ten titles, let alone national championships.
It feels like there is a major disconnect between what is working and what is called when they get into these third down situations.
This needs to be fixed quickly.
Drew Allar connected with Keandre Lambert-Smith for a 57 yard touchdown that was easily the most exciting and most promising play of the entire day.
Everyone has been clamoring for Penn State to push the ball down the field and they were able to finally get an explosive play when they needed it most. That touchdown put them up 31-24 with under two minutes remaining and won the game.
Allar finally threw his first interception of his career.
It took him over 300 pass attempts, an NCAA record for a first time starter to start their career.
That play was costly as Indiana was able to tie the game at 24, but looking ahead, maybe that is the catalyst to open things up. Instead of worrying about preserving that mark, it’s time to let him throw aggressively.
Something is off with this running game still. They averaged 3.1 yards per carry against a defense that allows a Big Ten worst 4.7 this season.
Things certainly don’t look the same visually like last year and that’s a big reason why the offense looks so clunky.
Even as the running game doesn’t look good visually, the running backs were still able to put up 131 rushing yards on Saturday.
Kaytron Allen finished with a game-high 81 yards on 18 carries and Nick Singleton had 50 yards on 15 carries and a touchdown.
They’re second in the Big Ten with 181.3 rushing yards per game, but it doesn’t look or feel right.
Penn State gave up two touchdown passes that totaled 159 yards. That was the majority of the offense that Indiana had on Saturday and they came on uncharacteristic mistakes from the defense.
One was a touchdown that went for 90 yards and gave the Hoosiers a 7-0 lead and the other was 69 yards that gave them a 14-7 lead.
Sloppy mistakes from a team that played sloppy for the majority of the game.
Besides Lambert-Smith who finished the game with 96 receiving yards, the other wide receivers finished with a total of 15 yards.
Dante Cephas was the only other wide out who caught a pass, finishing with two catches for those 15 yards.
Penn State’s wide receiving unit continues to be a problematic storyline and something that doesn’t seem to be going away.
Penn State finished the game with six penalties. After being one of the most disciplined teams to start the season, they have racked up five or more in their last four games.
This has to get cleaned up going forward for their remaining four games.
Ending on a positive note, Penn State now has seven wins, which will either be the third most or tied for second most in the Big Ten this season depending on how Ohio State’s game against Wisconsin goes.
It hasn’t look pretty and their loss against the Buckeyes has left a sour taste in the mouth of many surrounding the program, but their only loss so far has been to the third ranked team in the country.