Up Next: Iowa almost upset Penn State, now comes to Spartan Stadium

Arum Wadley and the Hawkeyes are waiting to put their claws into No. 4 Penn State at Kinnick Stadium

Fourth-ranked Penn State begins defense of the Big Ten football championship it won a year ago with a night game at Iowa, which hopes to recapture the magic it had in upsetting second-rated MI under the lights at Kinnick Stadium last season. In this one, Johnson made Iowa pay.

McSorley was 14 of 25 for 122 yards and one interception in the first half.

Before Trace McSorley found Juwan Johnson for a crowd-silencing, walk-off score, the quarterback had to find his mojo. But Tyler Davis missed another field goal, with the help of a bad snap and hold combination, and he had another blocked.

The Nittany Lions are 13-point favorites. Franklin believes his No. 2 quarterback has a mastery of the offense on par with McSorley's.

"But you look at (Penn State's) surrounding cast, the supporting cast, their entire offense, man for man, 11 guys, there's a reason why they won the championship last year and why they had such a good year". That pick, which came late in the first half, led to a touchdown that gave Iowa a 7-5 lead at the half.

On Oct. 26 that year, Penn State beat Lafayette 6-3 when Cooper French fielded a punt and lateraled to Yutz Diedrich, who scored on about a 60-yard return. One star shined bright for the Nittany Lions: Running back Saquon Barkley. The Hawkeyes took a four-point lead with 1:42 to play, but quarterback Trace McSorley led the Nittany Lions on a game-winning drive in the nick of time.

It appeared the Lions were about to start pulling away, as they have in so many similar situations over the past year, but this time their offense just never clicked for most of the fourth quarter.

Barkley will be back in action Saturday, when the fourth-ranked Nittany Lions host in at 3:30 p.m. on Big Ten Network in the "Generations of Greatness" game.

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PSU was caught in a blitz on both plays, and what had been an incredible defensive night up to that point turned into a "what the heck just happened" kind of evening.

The one time Penn State seemingly had to have a yard and actually ran between the tackles - a fourth-and-one from the Iowa 43 with 5:38 left - Franklin called time, Barkley got the ball, the line got push and the chains moved.

That quick first step and exceptional athleticism separates Barkley from his peers.

Saquon Barkley is getting Heisman Trophy hype for a reason.

Don't let a pair of breakdowns that resulted in two long touchdowns for Iowa's Akrum Wadley distract you from the fact that those two plays accounted for almost 40% of Iowa's total yardage all night. And, honestly, this is a game Penn State deserved to win.

The game picked up in the second half, but not for Iowa. He also recorded three tackles for a loss, intercepted a pass and returned it 33 yards to set up Iowa's first score, broke up two additional passes and recovered a fumble.

Barkley's 8-yard scamper midway through the third period gave the Nittany Lions a little breathing room at 15-7.

Half empty: OK, let's dive into the numbers and see if there's a bit of a growing concern with the overall offense and passing attack. Barkley scored the game-winner on a wheel-route reception out of the backfield, racing past Wisconsin linebacker T.J. Watt.

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