Northwestern opens the Big Ten season at Penn State today, and we're in State College to witness the action. This is a gut-check game for the Wildcats, who come in at 1-2. Penn State is a solid opponent, but in no way unbeatable. The Nittany Lions have struggled offensively, and their offensive line has limited their production in the run game.
The problem is, the Wildcats' offense has been even worse. NU has had the least efficient Power 5 conference offense in the country through the first four weeks of the season, and against a stout PSU defense, it might have even more trouble moving the ball than it has had. To open things up, the Wildcats are going to have to stay true to their spread principles, and Trevor Siemian can't be afraid to take shots downfield.
Defensively, the Wildcats will need to be aggressive against a weak Penn State offensive line and keep up their stout run defense. The defense should keep this one close for at least a little while, but it might also need to force some turnovers to help the offense pull out a win. Thoughts on the game? Let us know in the thread!