Time was running out in the third quarter. The "visiting" fans were getting wrestless. Penn State had squandered a 14-0 lead. The Hoosiers were slowly chipping away and tied the game at 24. The offense was sputtering. The depleted defense was hanging on for dear life. Somebody needed to make a play.
Somehow the Nittany Lion forced an Indiana punt. Then they got the play they needed. On an Indiana punt, Nate Stupar took out the outside blocker allowing Andrew Dailey to run free to the punter. Dailey threw himself in front of Hagerup's foot blocking the kick. Then James Van Fleet picked up the loose ball and darted into the endzone to give Penn State a 31-24 lead. The Hoosiers were never the same after that play. The Nittany Lions never looked back scoring another ten points to win going away.
Matthew McGloin rebounded from the disasterous second half at Ohio State to throw a superb game The Scranton McSlinger threw for 315 yards and two touchdowns on 22-of-31 passing. McGloin's 315 yards were the highest total for a Penn State quarterback since Daryll Clark threw for 359 yards against Akron in 2009.
A substory of the game was all of the people not on the field for Penn State. Chima Okoli, Devon Still, and Ollie Ogbu didn't play in the first half. All three were said to have skipped a team meal. Ogbu and Still got in the game in the second half, but Okoli never made an appearance. Neither did Michael Mauti who left the Ohio State game with a separated shoulder. Sean Stanley did not play after being sited for disorderly conduct this week, though Silas Redd did play and had 50 yards and a TD on nine carries. Anthony Fera also sat out the game after having his appendix removed. He's likely done for the regular season while the stitches heal.
Missing Ogbu, Still, and Mauti allowed Indiana to move the ball more than I think any of us expected them to. Thankfully the Hoosiers collapsed in the second half just as I predicted they would. Penn State survives, and hopefully everyone is out of the doghouse in time for Michigan State next week. It's been a rough week, but Penn State survived the Hoosiers. I'd say at this point it's 90% safe to book your travel plans to the Gator Bowl.