Penn State and Villanova will face off on the football field Saturday for the first time in 70 years, and believe it or not it’s the Wildcats who come in with the winning streak.
Villanova defeated Penn State, 20-14, in 1951 at Allentown High School Stadium, the last time the schools’ football teams have played each other. In fact, the Wildcats have won their last three games against the Nittany Lions, so you could say the last time Penn State defeated Villanova’s football team was way back in 1935.
Of course, things are different now. Penn State, which is currently ranked No. 6 in the country, is a football powerhouse that has defeated two ranked teams in its first three games, including last week’s 28-20 win over Auburn before nearly 110,000 fans at Beaver Stadium.
Villanova, currently ranked No. 7 in the FCS rankings, is more known for its men’s basketball program, which has won two national championships in the past six years under Hall of Fame head coach Jay Wright. But Villanova is eager to show they can play football, and aren’t looking for a participation award against their commonwealth rival.
“I’m not a moral victory guy, and our staff isn’t a moral victory type of staff, and I don’t think our players are either,” Villanova head coach Mark Ferrante told reporters. “We want to go out there and prepare and put the best product we can on the field and see where the cards lay.”
Both teams will take the field at Beaver Stadium undefeated on the season. It’s the fifth time James Franklin’s Nittany Lions have started the season 3-0, and unsurprisingly it’s led to rumors about the open head coaching job at USC following the firing of Clay Helton.
“I think there’s a lot of misinformation... So I’ve decided that I’m going to handle this internally, talk to our team. It happens every single year,” Franklin told reporters last week. “I’m not worried about distractions in the media and with the fans, I’m worried about my team.”
Calling the game on the Big Ten Network is play-by-play announcer Mark Followill, who is also the television voice for the Dallas Mavericks and FC Dallas. Alongside him will be analyst Matt Millen, a four-time Super Bowl champion and one-time All-American defensive tackle at Penn State best known for his stint as the president and CEO of the Detroit Lions. Elise Menaker will be handling reporting duties from the field.
Here’s everything you need to know to watch or stream Saturday’s game between Penn State and Villanova:
Villanova Wildcats (3-0) at No. 6 Penn State Nittany Lions (3-0): Week 4 NCAA Football
When: Saturday, Sept. 25
Where: Beaver Stadium, University Park
Time: Noon kickoff
TV: Big Ten Network (Mark Followill, Matt Millen)
Radio: 1210 WPHT via the Penn State Sports Network (Steve Jones, Jack Ham)
Streaming: Fox Sports app (requires cable authentication), fuboTV (free 7-day trial), YouTube TV, Hulu + Live TV, DirecTV Stream, Sling TV (all require a subscription)
On the Big Ten Network, B1G Tailgate will air at 10 a.m. from Happy Valley, hosted by Dave Revsine and Annie Sabo alongside analysts Gerry DiNardo, Howard Griffith, Joshua Perr, and Brock Vereen.
Other Saturday games worth watching
Noon: No. 12 Notre Dame at No. 18 Wisconsin, Fox (Gus Johnson, Joel Klatt)
3:30 p.m.: No. 16 Arkansas at No. 7 Texas A&M, CBS (Brad Nessler, Gary Danielson)
3:30 p.m.: Rutgers at No. 19 Michigan, ABC (Sean McDonough, Todd Blackledge)
7 p.m.: Tennessee at No. 11 Florida, ESPN (Joe Tessitore, Greg McElroy)
7:30 p.m.: West Virginia at No. 4 Oklahoma, ABC (Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit)
Local schools in action Saturday
Noon: Wagner at Temple, ESPN+ (Bill Spaulding, Barrett Brooks)
3:30 p.m.: Penn at Lafayette, NBC Sports Philadelphia+, ESPN+ (Gary Laubach, John Leone, Mike Joseph)
Penn State football 2021 schedule
Saturday, Sept. 4: Penn State 16, Wisconsin 10
Saturday, Sept. 11: Penn State 44, Ball State 13
Saturday, Sept. 18: Penn State 28, Auburn 20
Saturday, Sept. 25: Villanova at Penn State, 12 p.m. (Big Ten Network)
Saturday, Oct. 2: Indiana at Penn State, 7:30 p.m. (ABC)
Saturday, Oct. 9: Penn State at Iowa, TBA (Fox or FS1)
Saturday, Oct. 23: Illinois at Penn State, 12 p.m. (TBA)
Saturday, Oct. 30: Penn State at Ohio State, TBA (TBA)
Saturday, Nov. 6: Penn State at Maryland, TBA (TBA)
Saturday, Nov. 13: Michigan at Penn State, TBA (TBA)
Saturday, Nov. 20: Rutgers at Penn State, TBA (TBA)
Saturday, Nov. 27: Penn State at Michigan State, TBA (TBA)