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Penn State Football: Watch The Six Plays The Nittany Lions Are Thankful For This Year

by on November 23, 2016 3:00 PM

Penn State's season, no matter how this weekend's contest against Michigan State goes, will be one to remember. At 9-2 the Nittany Lions are looking at a very real shot to finish what is one of the more improbable 10+ win seasons in program history. So it's safe to say that this seven game winning streak has been full of more than its fair share of big plays and moments that changed the course of the season.

Here are six in particular that Penn State can be thankful for.

6. With Indiana moving the ball with relative ease and Penn State's special season on the ropes it seemed as though the magical run was about to end. That was, of course, until Chris Godwin snatched this pass from Trace McSorley out of the air to cut Indiana's lead to just three points. From there it was all Nittany Lions in the final 16:09 of play, scoring 31 points in that span.

5. For all of the big wins and big plays, few are as important in retrospect as Saquon Barkley's 25-yard overtime winner against Minnesota. If this season had a turning point it was this play, a game that gets two spots in the Top 5.

4. This is why you call timeouts late in the half. Up only three points on Maryland and with plenty of field to work with, it took just one carry from Saquon Barkley to blow the game open and give Penn State plenty of momentum heading into the second half. Barkley finished the day with 202 yards on the ground, few bigger than the ones he gained here. Another game turning on a single play.

3. Heading into a night time contest against Iowa there was cautious optimism that Penn State's season might just be for real. An upset over Ohio State coupled with a blowout win on the road against Purdue turned this game against Iowa into something far more important than anyone expected at the start of the year. The Hawkeyes had struggled up until this point but Iowa's history against Penn State made this far from an assumed outcome. Jason Cabinda's fourth down stop early in the game set the tone for the rest of the night.

2. Irvin Charles didn't even see this pass coming at first, but by the time the play was over he had gone 80-yards and turned a slow day around in a flash. Barkley might be the one who won Penn State the game against Minnesota, but the catch and run by Charles sparked Penn State back to life. 

1. This is kind of self explanatory.

Ben Jones covers Penn State football and basketball for He's on Twitter as @Ben_Jones88.
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