Last Updated 11:57 PM, October 30, 2021

No. 5 Ohio State survives against No. 20 Penn State in top-25 Big Ten football matchup

College football rankings: Alabama jumps Oklahoma; Penn State dips
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3:30 am, October 31, 2021

How No. 5 Ohio State pulled away from No. 20 Penn State

Jerron Cage Ohio State's Jerron Cage scored on a fumble recovery for a touchdown.

In a top-25 Big Ten East matchup, Ohio State defeated Penn State 33-24.

The game opened in a crazy fashion, with back-to-back fumbles on each team's opening possession. After things calmed down, Penn State scored the game's first touchdown as QB Sean Clifford found TE Brenton Strange for a touchdown. That score would be the last lead for the Nittany Lions.

Ohio State scored 17-straight points to jump out to a 17-7 lead in the second quarter. Buckeye DT Jerron Cage returned a fumble for a touchdown, giving Ohio State its sixth defensive touchdown on the season. Penn State answered with a field goal to end the half 17-10.

The second half saw big plays from both teams, but field goals were the difference-maker. Penn State WR Jahan Dotson tied the game 17-17, running into the endzone from the wildcat formation. Later in the game, Ohio State RB TreVeyon Henderson continued his fantastic freshman campaign bursting out for a 68-yard run. Yet, Ohio State K Noah Ruggles' three second-half field goals would ultimately give the Buckeyes the nine points it needed to win the game.

Ohio State moves to 7-1 after picking up a key win with the first College Football Playoff rankings approaching Tuesday. Penn State falls to 5-3, losing its third-straight game.

3:24 am, October 31, 2021

Final Score: Ohio State 33, Penn State 24

No. 5 Ohio State defeats No. 20 Penn State 33-24.

See the stats from the game below

Final Stats
3:15 am, October 31, 2021

Ohio State leads by 9! Ohio State 33, Penn State 24 | 2:41 4Q

A 26-yard Ohio State field goal pushes the Buckeye lead to nine with under three minutes to play. Penn State has zero timeouts remaining and needs two scores to win or tie the game.
2:56 am, October 31, 2021

Ohio State adds to lead! Ohio State 30, Penn State 24 | 4Q 07:12

Ohio State kicked a field goal in the red zone to push its lead over Penn State to six points. With a little over seven minutes remaining, Penn State needs a touchdown to tie the game.
2:47 am, October 31, 2021

Interception Buckeyes!

Ohio State Cameron Brown intercepts Penn State QB Sean Clifford. Brown returned the interception 25 yards to the Penn State 28 yards, giving the Buckeyes excellent field position.

2:41 am, October 31, 2021

The Nittany Lions do it again in the red zone!

Four red zone trips for Ohio State have led to just one touchdown, thanks to Penn State's defense. This time, on fourth down, Ohio State QB C.J. Stroud and WR Chris Olave couldn't connect in the end zone on a wide-open pass attempt.
2:34 am, October 31, 2021

The fourth quarter is here!

Ohio State leads Penn State 27-20 entering the fourth quarter. The Buckeyes will start the final period with the ball at their own 38-yard line.

See the stats through three quarters below

third quarter stats
2:29 am, October 31, 2021

Penn State pulls within 3! Ohio State 27, Penn State 24 | 0:10 3Q

After an 11-play, 75 yard drive, Penn State RB Keyvone Lee scored on a one-yard touchdown run. The Nittany Lions now trail by three points with the fourth quarter approaching.

2:19 am, October 31, 2021

Henderson runs in for a score! Ohio State 27, Penn State 17 |

Ohio State RB TreVeyon Henderson scored on a one-yard touchdown run. Earlier in the drive, Henderson broke free for a 68-yard gain. In total, Henderson carried the ball every play of a three-play, 71-yard drive en route to his 12th rushing touchdown of the season.

2:06 am, October 31, 2021

3 more for the Buckeyes! Ohio State 20, Penn State 17 | 06:42 3Q

A false-start from RB TreVeyon Henderson on fourth down forced Ohio State to settle for a field goal in the red zone. The Buckeyes lead 20-17 after the kick was good. On two red zone trips, Penn State's defense has held the nation's top scoring offense entering Week 9 to field goals.

1:55 am, October 31, 2021

Touchdown Penn State! Ohio State 17, Penn State 17 | 10:26 3Q

Penn State called a direct-snap for WR Jahan Dotson. Dotson then carried the ball to the left side and reached the ball over the pylon into the end zone for a touchdown. 

See the play below

1:27 am, October 31, 2021

Halftime update: 17-10 Buckeyes lead

Ohio State FB

No. 5 Ohio State leads No. 20 Penn State 17-10 after the first half. 

The game got off to a wild start with both teams fumbling on their opening drives. After the commotion, Penn State struck first as QB Sean Clifford found TE Brenton Strange for a touchdown. Outside of that touchdown, Nittany Lion WR Parker Washington has stood out in the first half with five catches for 82 yards.

Strange TD

Ohio State's offense found its groove in the second quarter, scoring 10 straight points to take the lead. However, the Buckeye highlight of the first half came when DT Jerron Cage scored on a fumble recovery for a touchdown. Cage's score is the difference so far as Ohio State has a seven point lead.

Penn State will receive the second-half kickoff.

1:21 am, October 31, 2021

Halftime- Ohio State 17, Penn State 10

A Penn State field goal to end the first half brings the Nittany Lions within one score entering halftime. 

See the first half stats below

First Half Stats
1:11 am, October 31, 2021

Big Man TD! Ohio State 17, Penn State 7 | 02:24 2Q

DT Jerron Cage scooped a fumble from QB Sean Clifford and carried it 57 yards into the end zone for the score. Clifford fumbled after getting sacked by DE Tyreke Smith on first down at the Ohio State 39-yard line. The scoop-and-score is the sixth defensive score for Ohio State this season (four pick-sixes, two scoop-and-scores).

1:04 am, October 31, 2021

Buckeyes take the lead! Ohio State 10, Penn State 7 | 03:48 2Q

Ohio State QB C.J. Stroud found WR Chris Olave on a 38-yard, cross-field pass for a touchdown. The catch was Olave's first after missing out on the last five targets. The Buckeyes lead by a field goal.

12:51 am, October 31, 2021

4th down stop! Penn State 7, Ohio State 3 | 09:23 2Q

The Ohio State defense stopped Penn State's offense on fourth down at its own 49-yard line. DE J.T. Tuimoloau sacked QB Sean Clifford to end the drive.
12:24 am, October 31, 2021

First quarter- Penn State 7, Ohio State 3

After the first period of play, Penn State leads Ohio State 7-3. 

See first quarter stats below.

first quarter
12:18 am, October 31, 2021

Ohio State answers with a field goal! Penn State 7, Ohio State 3 | 2:02 1Q

Ohio State K Noah Ruggles kicked a 35-yard field goal to give the Buckeyes their first points. The kick ended an 11-play drive. Penn State's seventh-best red zone defense kept Ohio State out of the end zone.
12:02 am, October 31, 2021

Touchdown Penn State! Penn State 7, Ohio State 0 | 6:08 1Q

Penn State Athletics TE Brenton Strange celebrates after scoring a TD TE Brenton Strange celebrates after scoring a TD

QB Sean Clifford found TE Brenton Strange for a 5-yard touchdown to cap off an 84-yard touchdown drive. The score is Strange's third of the season as the tight end has now caught a pass in six consecutive games. Penn State has its first lead over Ohio State since 2018.

11:48 pm, October 30, 2021

Back-to-back turnovers! Penn State 0, Ohio State 0 | 13:10 1Q

On Ohio State's first offensive drive, Penn State S Ji'Ayir Brown forced a fumble from Ohio State TE Jeremy Ruckert.

On the very next play, Ohio State S Marcus Williamson forced a fumble from Penn State RB Noah Cain.

The two fumbles mark a crazy start to this top-25 matchup

11:46 pm, October 30, 2021

We're underway!

No. 20 Penn State at No. 5 Ohio State has kicked off in Columbus. The Buckeyes received the opening kickoff.
10:36 pm, October 30, 2021

Pregame: Penn State at Ohio State

It's almost time for kickoff in Columbus as No. 20 Penn State will face No. 5 Ohio State.

Penn State enters the game led by QB Sean Clifford. Coming off a 9OT loss, Clifford will try to help the Nittany Lions offense bounce back this week. Joining Clifford is WR Jahan Dotson, one of the most explosive wideouts in college football.

Penn State's defense is one of the best in the country. LB Ellis Brooks leads the way as the Nittany Lions has shown the ability to make timely plays.

Ohio State's offense has weapons galore. QB C.J. Stroud and top targets WR Chris Olave and WR Garrett Wilson are dynamic threats on the outside, with RB TreVeyon Henderson gashing opponents up the middle. On defense, the Buckeyes have limited its last four opponents to an average of 11 points per game. 



9:19 pm, October 28, 2021

How to watch: Penn State vs. Ohio State

Get ready for a Big Ten battle in Week 9. It's No. 20 Penn State against No. 5 Ohio State, with both the Nittany Lions and the Buckeye looking to remain in the Big Ten East race.

  • Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
  • Date: Saturday, Oct. 30
  • TV channel: ABC
  • Streaming:
  • Location: Ohio Stadium in Columbus, Ohio

Click or tap here for a complete list of Week 9 TV info.

Joshua A. Bickel | USA TODAY Sports Images Ohio State Fans Ohio State fans plan to pack "The Shoe" in Week 9's rivalry matchup
9:19 pm, October 28, 2021

Previewing Penn State vs. Ohio State

When Penn State meets Ohio State on Saturday night, it will mark the 29th straight year that the two powerhouse programs have met. On the night before Halloween, the Nittany Lions and Buckeyes hope to add another exciting game to a storied rivalry.

Penn State will look to bounce back after a historic 9OT loss last week. Quarterback Sean Clifford leads the offense. Clifford threw for three touchdowns last year against Ohio State and may need to replicate or exceed that performance in what could be a high-scoring affair. Clifford can look to top target wide receiver Jahan Dotson to help him do so. As one of the best receivers in the country, Dotson is a touchdown threat at any moment. Pay attention to this quarterback-wide receiver duo Saturday Night.

On defense, Penn State has the sixth-best scoring defense in the FBS. The Nittany Lions have multiple impact players and every level of its defense. Up front, defensive tackle Derrick Tangelo does a great job occupying blocks and stuffing the run. The second level of the defense has tackling machines in linebackers Ellis Brooks and Brandon Smith. The back end features star safety Jaquan Brisker and a solid cornerback tandem in Tariq Castro-Fields and Joey Porter Jr. 

Penn State has the talent on defense to slow down Ohio State’s offense. With two ranked wins under their belt, the Nittany Lions have the experience as well.

Ohio State’s offense has found a new gear since losing back in Week 2. The Buckeyes have the highest-scoring offense in the nation, led by the development of quarterback C.J. Stroud in his first year as a starter. With weapons on the outside like wide receiver Garrett Wilson and Chris Olave, Stroud’s 22 passing touchdowns are sixth-best in the FBS. 

Yet, Ohio State’s offense is not all about airing it out; running back TreVeyon Henderson and his 11 rushing touchdowns give the Buckeyes balance on offense. Stay tuned for how Ohio State chooses to attack the Nittany Lions’ defense.

The Buckeye defense appears to have come together after a rough start to 2021. In Ohio State’s last four games, it has limited opponents to an average of 11 points per game. In the last five games, the Buckeyes have had four interceptions that were returned for touchdowns. Ohio State’s defensive emergence has some saying that the Buckeyes are once again College Football Playoff contenders.

This week, a loss for Ohio State almost surely knocks the Buckeyes out of the Playoff conversation; a loss for Penn State kills all hope for a Big Ten Championship berth. With high stakes, the latest Penn State/Ohio State battle should once again be competitive, following suit to the six-point average margin of victory in the series.

9:18 pm, October 28, 2021

AP Poll Update

Ohio State ranks ahead of Penn State in both the AP Poll and the Coaches Poll after Week 8. Here's what the rankings look like:

AP Poll Ranking Coaches Poll
Georgia 1 Georgia
Cincinnati 2 Cincinnati
Alabama 3 Alabama
Oklahoma 4 Oklahoma
Ohio State 5 Ohio State
Michigan 6 Michigan
Oregon 7 Michigan State
Michigan State 8 Oregon
Iowa 9 Ole Miss
Ole Miss 10 Iowa
Notre Dame 11 Notre Dame
Kentucky 12 Kentucky
Wake Forest 13 Wake Forest
Texas A&M 14 Texas A&M
Oklahoma State 15 Oklahoma State
Baylor 16 SMU
Pittsburgh 17 Penn State
Auburn 18 Baylor
SMU 19 Pittsburgh
Penn State 20 San Diego State
San Diego State 21 Auburn
Iowa State 22 UTSA
UTSA 23 Iowa State
Coastal Carolina 24 Coastal Carolina
BYU 25 NC State
8:56 pm, October 28, 2021

Penn State vs. Ohio State: Series history

Ohio State is in the midst of a four-game winning streak over Penn State, the longest in the series. Yet in the streak, two games have been decided by one point. Penn State's last win was in 2016, defeating Ohio State 24-21 at home. 

Ohio State leads the series 21-14. Here are all the meetings since 2015:

Date Location Winner Score
Oct. 31, 2020 University Park, PA Ohio State 38-25
Nov. 23, 2019 Columbus, OH Ohio State 28-17
Sept. 29, 2018 University Park, PA Ohio State 27-26
Oct. 28, 2017 Columbus, OH Ohio State 39-38
Oct. 22, 2016 University Park, PA Penn State 24-21
Oct. 17, 2015 Columbus, OH Ohio State 38-10
8:30 pm, October 28, 2021

Penn State vs. Ohio State: How they stack up

Penn State and Ohio State were ranked No. 20 and No. 5 in the latest AP Poll, respectively. Here's how they stack up based on this season's results.

Penn State vs. Ohio State
Penn State 2021 STATs Ohio State
5-2 (2-2) Record (Conf) 6-1 (4-0)
No. 20 AP rank No. 5
26.86 Points per game 49.3
14.71 Points allowed 18.6
372.4 Yards per game 559.7
253.57 Pass yards per game 352.1
118.9 Rush yards per game 207.6
323.6 Yards allowed per game 350.3
178.0 Pass yards allowed per game 230.9
145.6 Rush yards allowed per game 119.4
Sean Clifford
1647 yards (12 TDs, 5 INT)
Passing leader C.J. Stroud
1965 yards (22 TDs, 3 INT)
Noah Cain
768 yards (5 TD)
Rushing leader TreVeyon Henderson
686 yards (11 TD)
Jahan Dotson
552 yards (6 TD)
Receiving leader Garrett Wilson
605 yards (6 TD)
Ellis Brooks
55 total tackles (1.5 TFL, 1.0 SK)
Defense Ronnie Hickman
52 tackles (2 INT, 1 TD)