Penn State football travels to Iowa City to take on the Hawkeyes on Saturday afternoon from Kinnick Stadium. This should be an epic battle between top five teams with the winner gaining an edge in their respective Big Ten division races.
The all-time series is led by Penn State 17-13. More recent history also favors the Nittany Lions, who have won six out of the last seven. Until last year’s loss in Happy Valley, James Franklin had never lost to the Hawkeyes in four tries.
The series features some great games and moments. The 2002 game featured a furious comeback by Penn State where they scored 22 unanswered points in the fourth quarter only to fall in overtime by a touchdown. Penn State fans still have nightmares about the 2004 meeting, a 6-4 Iowa win that set offenses back about 50 years.
The 2008 game saw an Iowa upset of then third ranked Penn State, knocking the Nittany Lions out of a potential slot in the BCS Championship game. The 2017 game featured Saquon Barkley putting the Nittany Lions on his back with 358 all-purpose yards and the Nittany Lions still needed a walk-off touchdown on the game’s final play to walk away with the victory.
Blowouts have been rare and the 2021 is sure to be another close nail biter. There are sure to be at least another memorable moment or two to add to the series’ lore. Here are three bold predictions for the Nittany Lions.