LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — Indiana was absolutely a trendy upset pick against No. 8 Penn State on Saturday, if you consider ESPN "College GameDay" analysts Lee Corso and Desmond Howard trendy voices in college football. They both picked the Hoosiers.
But neither Corso nor Howard nor IU coach Tom Allen could have envisioned the Hoosiers winning the way they took down Penn State, 36-35, in overtime at Memorial Stadium Saturday in Bloomington, Indiana.
The final snapshot will make all the national shows:
IU quarterback Michael Penix Jr. diving and then stretching the football with his right arm into a tiny piece of the end zone for a two-point conversion that gave the Hoosiers a 36-35 overtime victory -- and their first victory over a Top 10 opponent in 42 tries, decades of futility.
"All I saw was opportunity," Penix said. "Opportunity to go out and show the world, the Indiana Hoosiers, what we're all about ... I couldn't let the team down."
Did Michael Penix score this game-winning 2-point conversion? pic.twitter.com/oGR1f7QQhO— Yahoo Sports College Football (@YahooSportsCFB) October 24, 2020
Ahead 17-7 at halftime, Indiana’s offense stalled for most of the second half and managed one first down in the third quarter. Penn State finally went ahead 21-20 with 2:30 remaining.
When the Nittany Lions stopped the Hoosiers on four downs with 1:47 to play, all they had to do was kill the clock to secure the win.
But IU let Penn State score on the first snap, and instead of taking a knee, halfback Devyn Ford ran 14 yards for a touchdown. Mistake. Major mistake.
That gave the Hoosiers the possession they needed to force overtime. Penix drove IU 75 yards to make it 28-26. He also ran 3 yards for the 2-point conversion.
Penix was simply warming up.
Penn State scored to open overtime. Indiana matched the touchdown on the Hoosiers’ fifth snap, a 9-yard pass from Penix to Whop Philyor.
IU coach Tom Allen decided to play to win, not play for another overtime.
"One play to win it," Allen said. "We've been close and I'm sick and tired of being close. I just decided and told the offensive coaches to be thinking about that."
The Hoosiers went for 2 — and got it when Penix ran toward the left side of the north end zone. With a Penn State tackler approaching, Penix dove from the 3-yard line with his right arm extended.
Penix used the ball to topple the orange pylon. The ruling on the field was touchdown. The play was reviewed for nearly five minutes.
Did the ball hit the ground before it hit the pylon?
The call was upheld: IU 36, Penn State 35 — on day when the Hoosiers were out-gained 488 yards to 211.
The Hoosiers defeated Penn State for only the second time in 24 games.
The Hoosiers did not start like a team that intended to defeat Penn State for only the second time in program history. The Nittany Lions marched for a touchdown on their first drive.
Penn State’s James Franklin, who earns $5.65 million, coached like a guy who did not believe that Indiana could beat his team. The Nittany Lions waved off their field goal team and went for a touchdown on fourth-and-goal from the Hoosiers' 3.
Penn State scored, earning the 7-0 lead.
The Hoosiers finished the first half by scoring the next 17 points. The Hoosier benefitted from intercepting two passes and recovering a fumble. Penn State also missed a field goal on the final play of the half.
Indiana’s offense disappeared in the third quarter. The Hoosiers managed one first down and 13 yards. Their second possession ended after one play when Penn State intercepted one of Penix’s passes.
That led to a Penn State touchdown on the final play of the third quarter that cut IU’s lead to 17-14.
The Hoosiers will play their second game of their nine-game Big Ten only schedule next Saturday at Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights upset Michigan State on Saturday in their first game in the return of coach Greg Schiano.
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