Penn State’s defense is championship caliber. Will it stay that way?

If defense still wins championships in today’s world of college football, then Penn State is entering its bye week in national championship form. While the importance of having a lock-down defense may not be quite as big as it used to be now that we are in an era where the game has evolved to benefit the offenses, it still can make a big difference when you have a defense you can rely on to win some games and make some big stops. And through five weeks of the season, Penn State’s is among the best.

Penn State is one of three FBS programs allowing fewer than 10 points per game this season. The other two just so happen to be in Penn State’s division, Michigan and Ohio State.

Penn State is also among the best in the nation at forcing turnovers. The Nittany Lions have gained 12 turnovers so far this season with an even distribution of six fumble recoveries and six interceptions turned on opposing offenses. The only teams with more so far are Western Kentucky (14) and California (13). A handful of other programs are tied with Penn State, including another division foe in Maryland.

When you combine this with the fact Penn State has lost just one turnover this season (on the opening kickoff vs. Northwestern last week), Penn State’s turnover margin of +11 is leading the nation. No other team in the country has a turnover margin of double digits. Maryland’s +9 is the second-best in the nation behind Penn State.

It is worth recognizing the level of competition Penn State has faced so far. Although West Virginia has built a respectable 4-1 record so far with four straight wins after losing the season opener in Beaver Stadium, Penn State’s schedule has consisted of wins over Delaware, Illinois, and Northwestern. Not exactly a murder’s row of quality competition this season.

Penn State’s toughest games on the…

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Author : Nittany Lions Wire

Publish date : 2023-10-02 22:55:54

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