IOWA CITY, Iowa — Juwan Johnson caught a 7-yard TD pass as time expired and fourth-ranked Penn State rallied to stun Iowa, 21-19, on Saturday night in the Big Ten opener for both teams.
Saquon Barkley had 211 yards rushing and had 12 catches for 94 yards for the Nittany Lions (4-0, 1-0), who outgained Iowa 579-273 but nearly blew a game that could have been crippling to their postseason hopes.
“Felt like with [Johnson], we had a height advantage and we could slip him through the middle of the field,” Penn State coach James Franklin said of the winning play.
Akrum Wadley had a 70-yard TD reception midway through the fourth quarter and a 35-yard touchdown run with 1:42 left to put the Hawkeyes (3-1, 0-1) ahead 19-15.
Penn State went 80 yards on 12 plays to close out the game, and Trace McSorley found Johnson in a crowded end zone on fourth down.
McSorley finished 31-for-48 for 284 yards, with one touchdown and one interception.
The Lions had 29 first downs to Iowa’s 11 and won time of possession 39:39 to 20:11, running 99 offensive plays to Iowa’s 45.
Wadley had 80 yards rushing and 75 yards receiving and Nate Stanley threw for 191 yards and two TDs for Iowa.
“It’s a tough loss for all of us,” Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz said. “You can see first-hand why they were the Big Ten champs last year.”— AP