Iowa Football

Fun Facts: Iowa-Penn State

There really is a very long pencil in Pennsylvania

1. Iowa’s six straight losses to Penn State is its longest such current streak to any team. It has lost its last four games against Miami (Fla.), Notre Dame, Wisconsin and Great Lakes.

2. This is the Nittany Lions’ first 0-4 start since 2001. They have never been 0-5.

3. Penn State was 5-0 when it played Iowa last year.

4. Penn State outgained Indiana 488 yards to 211 and Nebraska 501-298, and lost both games. The Nittany Lions have 107 first downs to their opponents’ 73.

5. Iowa has a wide receiver named Brandon Smith. Penn State has a linebacker named Brandon Smith. They both wear No. 12.

6. The last time Iowa didn’t intercept a pass was 12 games ago, against Penn State.

7. Penn State beat Iowa 17-12 last year to take a 17-12 lead in their series.

8. The Hawkeyes lead the Big Ten in fewest sacks allowed with three. Penn State ranks last with 15.

9. The last seven crowds to attend an Iowa-Penn State game at Beaver Stadium had crowds of at least 103,000 people. Not this time.

10. This is the second-straight week Iowa is playing a team that went 11-2 last season. Minnesota and Penn State are a combined 1-7 this year.

11. The Hawkeyes have won back-to-back Big Ten games by four touchdowns for the first time since 1990. Penn State did it last year, against Maryland and Purdue.

12. Penn State had 25 plays that weren’t field goal attempts in Nebraska’s red zone last Saturday. It scored one touchdown among those plays.

13. After four weeks of Big Ten football, Iowa is the only team with a 2-2 record.


14. Penn State’s defense has given up touchdowns of 26, 49, 42, 62, 34, 38, and 45 yards the past three weeks.

15. Iowa opened this week as the favorite for the first time in its last five games against Penn State.

16. Penn State hasn’t had a losing record since 2004.

17. The last time Hawkeye starting defensive end Zach VanValkenburg played against a team from Pennsylvania, his Hillsdale College team defeat Kutztown 40-26 in the 2018 NCAA Division II playoffs.

18. Only two of Hawkeye freshman Tory Taylor’s 20 punts have been returned, and neither was for positive yardage.

19. Both states have a city named Scranton. Pennsylvania’s is the birthplace of President-elect Joe Biden. Iowa’s is the hometown of Bryce Paup, former Northern Iowa and NFL linebacker.

20. There’s an old children’s joke that the longest pencil in the world is Pennsylvania. Wysox, Pa., has a very long pencil.

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