Every week when the Penn State Nittany Lions take the field the world of Twitter is alive and well. Friday night was no different as the Nittany Lions clubbed Illinois 63-24 and had Twitter buzzing in the process.
Friday night was the best night of Miles Sanders Penn State career, and the junior running back was off and running early. As part of a Nittany Lion rushing attack that racked up 387 yards, Sanders started the scoring on Friday night.
Been saying all year Miles Sanders looks like a more polished back than Saquon. And no, I'm not saying he's better.— Adam Seitz (@The_Sauce_7) September 22, 2018
Miles Sanders should never have been doubted as far as filling Barkley's shoes.— JJ (@TheBrokenTendy) September 22, 2018
Thank you for coming to my TED Talk
In the second quarter true freshman tight end Pat Freiermuth recorded his first career touchdown reception. While it was only a 3-yard reception, it was an interesting one as he nearly fell victim to the turf monster.
Pat Freiermuth going to be a great player— Ross Shumate (@Rossthaboss20) September 22, 2018
First touchdown for Pat Freiermuth!— Eric Sion (@ericbsion) September 22, 2018
With the Nittany Lions leading 21-7, Illinois had first and goal inside the five yard line. The Illini fumbled the ball into the end zone and it appeared that the Penn State defense was going to get a stop that had the potential to break the Illini. However, instead of just falling on the ball Nick Scott tried to scoop it up, never got possession, and lost the ball into the air allowing Illinois to come down with it. Twitter was not pleased.
Way to go Nick Scott...fall on the ball— Jeff Geisel (@coachjgeisel) September 22, 2018
Get the ball, don’t try to score dammit.— Jeremy Reeder (@TheJeremyReeder) September 22, 2018
Nick Scott u serious?— James Gamble Jr. (@jamesg95) September 22, 2018
Adding insult to injury, Illinois scored a touchdown on the next play.
After Illinois, thanks in large part to a dropped interception by Tariq Castro-Fields and Penn State penalties, scored to start the second half to take a 24-21 lead, Sanders continued his big night. Boobie ripped off a 48-yard touchdown run to give the Nittany Lions a 28-24 lead.
Miles Sanders is gonna lead PSU to victory. Illinois has no answer for him— Jason Coleman (@Jellybean_kaang) September 22, 2018
Miles Sanders is good— Haskins SZN (3-0) (1-1) (@dcthakilla) September 22, 2018
Thank Jesus for Miles Sanders— Evan Huber (@evanhuber46) September 22, 2018
Miles Sanders is good at football— Dan McG (@DMcgerv) September 22, 2018
Sanders finished the night with a career high 200 yards rushing and 3 touchdowns. He also threw a touchdown pass that was negated by penalty.
Following a McSorley touchdown pass to Juwan Johnson, the Nittany Lion defense stepped up. Jan Johnson recorded his first career interception, leading to a touchdown pass from McSorley to KJ Hamler on the next play from scrimmage.
Jan Johnson singlehandedly destroyed my football team’s season my junior year of high school. And now he’s singlehandedly destroying Illinois’ offense.— Kordel Davis (@K_Dellz) September 22, 2018
Jan Johnson I swear I'll never take your name in vein again.— NittanyNation (@NittanyNation40) September 22, 2018
Jan Johnson > Jan from the Office— No. 1 Allison fan (@Duces31) September 22, 2018
KJ Hamler is special.— Kevin primm (@kevinprimm55) September 22, 2018
True freshman running back Ricky Slade was given a bigger role on Friday night due to Mark Allen being out. Not only did Slade embrace this role, but he excelled with his first career two touchdown game.
Ricky Slade with a terrific cut then explodes for a 61 yard TD run. Penn State opening this thing up. #Devy— LJ Chaney (@pacificscouting) September 22, 2018
Ricky Slade has WHEELS— Hoss (@robert_hosler) September 22, 2018
Ricky Slade got the jets— Thad Castle (@DBollinger_31) September 22, 2018
Ricky Slade is fun.— potassium (@kmart93) September 22, 2018
Miles Sanders is fun.
2nd TD of the night for Ricky Slade!!! 56-24— Beccaaaaaa (@xflyersgirlx11x) September 22, 2018
While the Nittany Lions were victorious against the Fighting Illini, it was not all pretty. Plenty of Penn State fans, myself included, are quite worried about the defense heading into next Saturday’s showdown with Ohio State.
I hate the Penn State defense.— TERI (@terilyns68) September 22, 2018
#PennState is in big time trouble next week the way thus defense is playing.— Philly Sports Fanatic (@thunderducks26) September 22, 2018
Penn State defense is not good— Logan Robbins (@LogRobs) September 22, 2018
Penn State has a top 5 worthy offense and an unranked defense. #PSUvsILL— S. Kelly (@Sam_Wise730) September 22, 2018
To the credit of Brent Pry and his players, Penn State’s defense held the Fighting Illini to just 157 yards of offense and 7 points in the second half.
For the first two quarters and a drive Friday night proved to be a trap game. It was a weird start time, a weird night to play a game, and the week before the Buckeyes come to town. The Nittany Lions have plenty of work to do this week, but what matters it they’re 4-0.
It’s Ohio State week.