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Gary Putnik | | October 24, 2021

Illinois stuns No. 7 Penn State, wins first 9OT game in history

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No. 7 Penn State and Illinois made history in State College, PA, on Saturday, needing an FBS-record ninth overtime to complete the contest. The Illini came out on top with a 20-18 win over the Nittany Lions.

This game was the sixth in FBS history to make it to the seventh overtime. It would also be the first to go into the eighth. Adding more to the history of this game, this was Illinois' first road win against an AP top-10 team since 2007, when the Illini took down No. 1 Ohio State. 

LONGEST OT: Check out the history of the longest overtime games in FBS history

After both teams came out with field goals in the first two overtimes, it shifted to the two-point conversion period. Each team failed to convert on their first five attempts, but in the eighth, both found the end zone on runs. It would end after Illinois’ backup QB Brandon Peters found Casey Washington on a pass to walk it off.

The Illini kept the Nittany Lions offensive production to a minimum in Beaver Stadium. Coming into this week, Penn State averaged 396.7 yards with a total of 21 touchdowns. Today, James Franklin’s squad was held to just 18 points and 227 total yards.

Penn State QB Sean Clifford’s health was a question coming into the game against Illinois after leaving the 23-20 loss to Iowa early with an undisclosed injury. Clifford was held to 165 yards and a touchdown.

OT RULES: Here are the rules for overtime in college football

The Illinois offense did enough to get the win. Illini running backs Chase Brown and Josh McCay combined for 365 yards on the ground. Brown also accounted for the lone touchdown in regulation for the Illini.

Both teams will be back in action Oct. 30 when Penn State travels to Ohio State at 7:30 p.m. and Illinois faces Rutgers at noon.  

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