“I was ready,” Brisker said. “When you come to Penn State, you expect to play in front of big crowds like this. You’ve got to take it in for 10 seconds, then it’s back to reality.”
Jahan Dotson made 10 catches for 78 yards and a touchdown, tight end Brenton Strange caught a touchdown and tight end Tyler Warren and Noah Cain ran for scores to help the Nittany Lions beat an SEC opponent at home for the first time since 1985 against Alabama.
Penn State had to make two late defensive stands to hold the lead.
“I think we have a really good mentality on defense,” coach James Franklin said. “I think our leadership is really good. I think we’re a mentally tough football team. I think we’re a physically tough football team.”
First, the Nittany Lions kept Auburn (2-1) out of the end zone after a first-and-goal at the 10. An incomplete fade from the 2 on fourth down with 3:08 left gave Penn State the ball back.
Auburn coach Bryan Harsin said he and offensive coordinator Mike Bobo script plays for those situations and that was the call they liked best. He said Nix had multiple options —- not just the fade that really wasn’t close — but said he’d have to watch the film before knowing if it was the best decision.
“I trust what he saw out there — we’ll look at it, we’ll learn from it and we’ll go from there,” Harsin said.
The Nittany Lions could not run out the clock and punted back to Auburn with 45 seconds left.