Iowa City, Iowa — Juwan Johnson caught a seven-yard TD pass as time expired and fourth-ranked Penn State rallied to stun Iowa 21-19 Saturday night in the Big Ten opener for both teams.
Saquon Barkley had 211 yards rushing and 94 yards receiving for the Nittany Lions (4-0, 1-0), who outgained Iowa 579-273 but nearly blew a game that could’ve 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 with 284 yards passing on 48 tries.
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.”