College football Week 3 winners and losers: Penn State and Oregon dominate


With two road victories against Power Five competition in three weeks, the Penn State No. 23 took care of business in September and set his sights on nine or more regular-season wins.

Saturday’s 41-12 victory at Auburn even included beauty points. For starters, winning by 29 points against an SEC opponent even as underdog as the Tigers speaks for itself.

Add an offense that has gained 477 yards, averaging 6.3 yards per carry and 10.1 yards per pass attempt. Two freshman running backs with extreme potential, Nicholas Singleton and Kaytron Allen, combined for 176 yards and four touchdowns — one, Singleton’s 54-yard scoring in the fourth quarter, put a damper on the concept of SEC speed.

Defensively, PSU forced four turnovers, harassed Auburn quarterback TJ Finley and held the Tigers’ rushing game to just 119 yards on 36 carries.

More than the narrow season-opening victory at Purdue, the victory validates the Nittany Lions’ place in the USA TODAY Sports AFCA Coaches poll and hints at the growing possibility that PSU could land in the New Year’s Six.

To enter one of these big bowl games, the Nittany Lions must avoid stumbling against the third and fourth tiers of the Big Ten – Northwestern, Indiana, Maryland, Rutgers – and earn a share in the four games that will determine whether they earn all kinds of national respect: Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio State and Michigan State.


USA Today

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