UNIVERSITY PARK – A Penn State football season that began with such promise took another turn for the worse Saturday afternoon at Beaver Stadium.
It was the Nittany Lions’ fourth loss in their last five games and sat their record at 6-4 after a 5-0 start.
Special teams played a prominent role early.
No. 9 Michigan improved to 9-1 on the season.
(updated 5 p.m.)
Michigan quarterback Cade McNamara hit tight end Erick All dragging across the middle for a 47-yard touchdown that gave the Wolverines a 21-17 lead with 3:29 remaining, and the Michigan defense made it stand up.
Penn State led 3-0 in the first quarter after successfully faking a punt and punter Jordan Stout completing an 18-yard pass to Curtis Jacobs.
The Lions went to trickeration on their next possession, and it backfired. After driving to the 2 and facing fourth down, Penn State lined up Stout for a field goal attempt. Holder Rafael Checa threw a pass to Stout, who rolled left and was snowed under for an 18-yard loss, missing a chance for a 6-0 lead.
Michigan took a 7-3 lead in the second quarter on the first of two touchdown passes from McNamara to Roman Wilson. The Wolverines extended their lead to 14-6 before Penn State tied the game in the fourth quarter on a 2-yard touchdown pass from Sean Clifford to Tyler Warren and a successful 2-point conversion pass to Jahan Dotson.
After Arnold Ebiketie’s sack of McNamara, who fumbled, the Lions got possession at Michigan’s 16 and turned that into a Stout 31-yard field goal and 17-14 lead with 5:55 to play. Michigan promptly drove 75 yards in six plays for the game-winning score.
Penn State will host Rutgers next Saturday at noon in the home finale. The Big Ten Network will televise. The Mirror will have a complete report in Penn State’s Extra on Monday.
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