4 takeaways from Penn State Nitany Lions 2023 regular season finale
The Penn State Nittany Lions finished their regular season 10-2 with a 7-2 record in the Big 10 after beating Michigan State 42-0 to close out the regular season. A Bowl game will be coming, and it will be announced on Sunday, December 3. Until then, it is an excellent chance to look back on a fantastic regular season and project what is coming ahead.
Drew Allar finishes his first season as the Penn State Nittany Lions quarterback on a high note
The sophomore season and first season as a starter for Drew Allar had ups and downs, but the regular season ended on a high note. Allar went 17-26 for 292 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions in the win over the Michigan State Spartans. It was the second-most yards in a game for his career and was tied for the highest yards per attempt.
Allar finishing his year this way is significant because things had been rocky in the meantime. Against Maryland, it looked like Allar was genuinely progressing. However, he struggled against Michigan and left with an injury against Rutgers. So, the win against Michigan State is the perfect game for him to reset and finish his first year as the starter with a good taste in his mouth. Expectations will be high for Allar now that he can take some time to look back on what he learned and get better for next season.
Will the Penn State Nittany Lions hire an offensive coordinator before the Bowl Game?
The big news from the season was the Nittany Lions moving on from offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich after the team lost to Michigan. The Nittany Lions averaged 34.5 points per game in the two games without Yurcich, but the staff will change this offseason.
The question is whether or not the team will hire a new name before the Bowl game. With Penn State likely playing on New Year's Eve or New Year's Day, the team has some time to bring in a fresh face and have them install a few things for the returning players during practice time for the bowl. These extra practices are crucial to build continuity towards the next season, and James Franklin has said that he will be looking into candidates in the meantime. More news could come soon.
Penn State completes another successful season under James Franklin
The Nittany Lions will not be included in the College Football Playoff, but they did have a strong season featuring back-to-back ten-win seasons and seven-win conference campaigns. After a stretch from 2020 to 2021 when the Nittany Lions went 11-11 with an 8-10 Big 10 record, there were questions about how James Franklin and his group would respond. They went 21-4 with a 14-4 Big 10 record. It is the best run that Franklin has had since 2016 and 2017. Seeing him rebound and get the program right back where it belongs is impressive. The best part is that expectations will be another 10 win season in 2024 when you look at the talent on the roster.
What Bowl will the Penn State Nittany Lions play in?
While Penn State will not be playing this weekend, some action in the conference championships will dictate where the Nittany Lions play their Bowl game. The outcomes will determine where they play, but almost all projections have them going to one of the Orange Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, Peach Bowl, or Cotton Bowl.
The Orange Bowl will be on December 30 in Miami, Florida. The Peach Bowl will also be held on December 30 and played in Atlanta, Georgia. The Fiesta Bowl will be on January 1 in Glendale, Arizona. Lastly, the Cotton Bowl would be held on December 29, in Arlington Texas. Fans will not be watching Penn State, but there will be plenty to watch this Saturday to find out where we must pack our bags for this holiday season.