Where do you turn once November rolls around and Big Ten weather begins to dicatate your gameplan? Obviously an experienced power back to keep the offense chugging in any conditions. Where did Penn State turn when the weather report in Bloomington called for a wet afternoon with 50 mph wind gusts? A true freshman who was playing his high school ball in Florida at this time last year.
Kaytron Allen did a little bit of everything on Saturday, and with each week it’s becoming more clear that he is a complete running back playing well beyond his years. Allen made tough runs to pick up short yardage. He used his vision to turn short runs into long ones. He created plays out of the backfield that otherwise were going nowhere. He did everything that was needed from him on a blustery afternoon in Bloomington.
Allen gained 11 yards on his first carry and never slowed down. He had six carries on the next possession to set up fellow true freshman Nick Singelton’s one-yard touchdown run. After trading possessions during a 7-7 stalemate, Allen took advantage of a short field to get in the end zone on just two plays -- a 27-yard reception followed by an 11-yard touchdown run. The score gave Penn State a 14-7 lead, putting them up for good.
Allen helped extend the lead the next drive with four consecutive runs that ended with a six-yard score. Then, early in third quarter, Allen took a desperation screen pass from Sean Clifford as he attempted to escape a sack. Allen made a man miss, tiptoed along the sideline, then went all the way across the field in an Allen Robinson-esque play where he just ran around everyone on the field. He was eventaully caught after a 45-yard gain, then took a handoff for a six-yard touchdown three plays later.
There’s reason to get excited when thinking of what Allen can do over the next four games of the season. There’s even more reason for excitement when looking ahead to what Allen and Singleton will bring to the table in ‘23.
Allen led the team in both rushing and receiving yards, totalling 158 all-purpose yards and three touchdowns on the day.
Kobe King - It was by far the best performance of King’s young career, leading the team with eight tackles and 2.5 TFLs.
The TFL Crew - A total of 12 members of Penn State’s defense combined to set a program record 16 TFLs to keep the Hoosiers offense grounded. A tip of the hat to King, Jaylen Reed, Ji’Ayir Brown, Nick Tarburton, Adisa Issac, Johnny Dixon, Jamari Budden, Chop Robinson, Dvon Ellies, Hakeem Beamon, Charlie Katshire and Coziah Izzard.