Penn State Defeats Purdue 35-31
Written by AJ Rovner on September 3, 2022
WEST LAFAYETTE – It wasn’t pretty, but the Penn State Nittany Lions opened up their 136th season of collegiate football defeating the Purdue Boilermakers by a score of 35-31. A game that featured eight lead changes and had everybody on the edge of their seats for a game that took over four hours in West Lafayette at Ross-Ade Stadium.
The Nittany Lions trailed by three points after the first quarter. But a drive that bled over into the second quarter got Penn State its first points of the season on a crossing route which was a twelve yard connection between starting quarterback Sean Clifford and recent wide receiver transfer from Western Kentucky Mitchell Tinsley. The catch was Tinsley’s first as a Nittany Lion.
The Boilermakers immediately answered with a score of their own when starting running back King Doerue punched it in from two yards out to give the Boilermakers their three point lead right back.
Penn State wouldn’t falter though scoring fourteen points in the final five minutes of the first half which included a two yard quarterback sneak from Clifford as well as a sixty-seven yard connection from Clifford to his tight end Brenton Strange with only two seconds remaining in the first half which gave the Nittany Lions a 21-10 lead going into the break.
The third quarter was all Boilermakers outscoring the Nittany Lions 14-0 which gave them a 24-21 advantage with a quarter of football remaining.
Clifford did not start the third quarter though due to cramps and that’s when true freshman Drew Allar took his first collegiate snaps.
“Yeah, so he cramped up, had to go in and get an IV then came back and then started to cramp up again. Wasn’t sure if he was going to be able to go so we got going again and then he was able to obviously get in there and play,” Franklin said.
Yet, Clifford touchdown passes of twenty-nine yards to wide receiver Keandre-Lambert Smith and a ten yard strike to running back Keyvone Lee with fifty-seven seconds remaining which ultimately put the Nittany Lions back on top following a Sean Clifford pick six returned by Chris Jefferson won Penn State their first game of the year. The Lee touchdown left Purdue with only fifty-seven seconds remaining and that ultimately wasn’t enough.
One key play in the game was when Purdue quarterback Aidan O’Connell threw a prayer down the middle of the field to tight end Payne Durham with under three minutes to go in the game and was ruled a first down yet was ultimately overturned as incomplete which then led to a punt. That gave Clifford and the Nittany Lions the chance they needed and winded up succeeding.
Penn State will open its home schedule a week from today when they take on Ohio at 12:00. You can catch the game on ABC.
Feature Image By AJ Rovner