UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. (WTAJ) — It’s Michigan week for Penn State and they’ve been given an extra week thanks to the bye to prepare for the No. 5 Wolverines, but the week off has not been kind to the Nittany Lions under James Franklin.
Penn State is 3-6 coming off the bye with Franklin at the helm, and that includes last years deflating nine overtime loss to Illinois. The Nittany Lions have lost three of its last four byes, and those struggles led Franklin to examine how they prepare during the time off.
“We added an extra day of practice. Staffing-wise we’re able to be in a position where we have analysts and people who are able to get ahead for us and stay ahead,” said Franklin. “I think that’s helped. And then also like we’ve talked about at this point in the season about how we’ve rotated and played guys to be as healthy and as fresh as we possibly can be.”
While they are 5-0, Penn State’s uninspiring wins over Central Michigan and Northwestern left plenty to work on and Franklin feels they are a better football team than they were two weeks ago.
“We’ve done a good job of doing self-scout and really kind of have a good idea of who we are, what we are, what are the areas that we need to work on, what are the areas that we need to build on,” Franklin said. “Obviously, we’ve been able to take some time doing good on good at practice and then being able to take some time to get a head start on Michigan.”
Michigan is one of four ranked Big Ten teams and they welcome Penn State to Ann Arbor with a raucous crowd for the Maize Out that is scheduled to take over The Big House.