Penn State came out sluggish in its return home after two heartbreaking losses on the road, but Trace McSorley made sure his team did not encounter another frustrating day.
The true freshman played extensively, finishing with four tackles and a forced fumble on the second half kickoff that Penn State recovered.
McSorley threw for two touchdowns, ran for another and set up a pair of Saquon Barkley touchdowns with his arm Saturday to lift the 17-ranked Nittany Lions to a 35-6 victory over Rutgers before a homecoming crowd of 107,531 at Beaver Stadium. Giovanni Rescigno completed 7 of 20 passes for 43 yards for the Scarlet Knights. Best blocks: Penn State left tackle Will Fries and left guard Steven Gonzalez opened big holes on Barkley's touchdown runs of 1 and 4 yards in the fourth quarter.
Rutgers went up 44-36 early in the second half, but Central Connecticut responded with 10 straight points to take a two-point lead with 10:27 to play. Worst call: Rutgers coach Chris Ash chose to run out the final 1:13 of the first half rather than have quarterback Giovanni Rescigno attempt a deep pass. Best run: McSorley faked a handoff to Barkley, broke a couple of tackles and ran for a 20-yard touchdown in the second quarter. Looking to spoil the party will be coach Mike Riley's Nebraska team that has struggled to a 4-6 record thus far, in 2017. He added a 25-yarder later in the first, but Rutgers' momentum ended there. Injury report: Penn State sophomore offensive tackle Ryan Bates and sophomore defensive end Ryan Buchholz, who are out with undisclosed leg injuries, were not in uniform.
Rutgers: The Scarlet Knights let a rare chance to win back-to-back games slip away after a solid first half.
Worst call: Fourth-and-2 at the Penn State 48, leading 28-6 with 14 minutes left, the Lions punted.