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Penn State football: CFB analyst claims Nittany Lions are ready to beat Ohio State, Michigan

According to a major analyst, this could be the year for Penn State football.

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Penn State football, JD Pickell, Michigan, Ohio State
Nov 5, 2022; Bloomington, Indiana, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions quarterback Drew Allar (15) runs the ball past Indiana Hoosiers linebacker Dasan McCullough (0) during the second half at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Goddin-USA TODAY Sports

Rarely in the history of Penn State football under James Franklin has there been such an overwhelming sense of anticipation as there is now heading into the 2023 season. Just a year ago, fans held a wide range of expectations, but not a single soul could have predicted that the Nittany Lions would conclude the season with an impressive 11-2 record, securing a top 10 ranking and clinching a victory in the Rose Bowl against the PAC-12 Champions. A prominent college football analyst, JD Pickell of ON3, recently stated that Penn State is poised to finally surpass both Ohio State and Michigan in the Big Ten.

Hype is building for Penn State football

It is no secret that Penn State football is widely regarded as one of the premier teams in college football at present. The Nittany Lions boast an abundance of talent from last year’s roster, which was among the nation’s finest, despite losses to Michigan and Ohio State.

In order to elevate themselves to the next level and establish their position as contenders for the Big Ten title and the College Football Playoff, it is imperative for Penn State to conquer both the Buckeyes and Wolverines.

According to Pickell, the upcoming 2023 season presents a perfect opportunity for Penn State football to achieve all of these objectives.

JD Pickell says Penn State might be ready to beat Michigan, Ohio State in 2023

Here is what ON3 analyst JD Pickell had to say on his show, The Hard Count, about Penn State football and their hopes of climbing back to the top of the Big Ten in 2023.

“They’re getting a lot of hype now and for good reason,” Pickell said. “What would Penn State fans typically say going into last season? ‘Really good roster. Nick Singleton, we’re excited about him, but we just don’t know with Sean Clifford. How far can Sean Clifford take us?’”

“There was a feeling around Penn State that Sean Clifford was a really good quarterback, but was he a really great quarterback? Was he gonna be enough for you to beat Michigan and Ohio State? The eventual answer to that question was not necessarily was Penn State good enough collectively — Sean Clifford included — to beat Michigan or Ohio State in 2022.”

Pickell further highlighted key players in the Penn State football lineup, including Drew Allar, Olu Fashanu, Kalen King, Nick Singleton, and others, as compelling reasons to be optimistic about the Nittany Lions’ prospects this upcoming season.

He concluded his analysis by affirming that the necessary components for success are already in place for James Franklin and his coaching staff as they prepare for the 2023 season: all the pieces of the puzzle have come together for the Nittany Lions.

“All these things on paper are aligning for Penn State to go and slay the dragon,” he said. “To go and beat Ohio State. To go beat Michigan. That’s the mission now for Penn State.”



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Chris, a Penn State University student, founded Basic Blues Nation in 2022. He remains a co-owner of the website today. Throughout a six-year writing career, Chris has been a beat writer, a staff writer, an Editor-In Chief, and more, serving as a member of the credentialed media for a number of Big Ten schools. He has covered everything from non-revenue sports to CFP National Championship matchups, as well as some professional and high school sports.

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