Sep 29, 2012; Champaign, IL, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions running back Zach Zwinak (28) tries to avoid a tackle by Illinois Fighting Illini defensive lineman Glenn Foster (91) during the second quarter at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bradley Leeb-US PRESSWIRE

Penn State Throttles Illinois, Bill O'Brien Gets First Big Ten Win 35-7

Coming into the game, many fans hoped to see Penn State run the score up on Illinois. Without intention, that’s what happened. Everything that Penn State did today seemed to work.

Matt McGloin completed 18 of 30 passes (60%) for 211 yards and a touchdown while “rushing” for two more. Odd as it may sound, this may have been his worst game of the year. He seemed rushed at times and struggled with accuracy at others. Still, he avoided turning the ball over and didn’t make any terrible mistakes.

Zach Zwinak had his first career 100 yard game on 19 carries and chewed the clock most of the 3rd and 4th quarter. He also had a a rushing touchdown.

The Illini defense kept a close eye on Allen Robinson and the standout wide receiver had just 3 catches for 35 yards. That allowed guys like other guys like Matt Lehman (5 70 1) to capitalize on the lack of attention. O’Brien had tight ends lined up in the backfield on multiple occasions and in different formations. That will give opposing teams another headache when it comes to watching film on the Nittany Lions.

The secondary was not tested much of the day and gave up the lone TD on a trick play.  The front seven gave up a 52 yard run to Donovonn Young, but allowed just 22 yards on the other 21 carries. That is a fantastic job by those guys.

Michael Mauti had his best effort of the day, intercepting 2 touchdowns, returning one for a Penn State record 99 yards and had a sack. Not enough can be said about his effort through the first five games.

Penn State will host Northwestern at noon next Saturday for Homecoming. The Wildcats will enter that game 5-0.

For all of the latest on the Penn State Nittany Lions, follow VBR Lead Editor Tim Tolley on Twitter.


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Tags: Football Illinois Fighting Illini Penn State Nittany Lions

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