Penn State, Kentucky chase 10-win finish in Citrus Bowl
Citrus Bowl: No. 13 Penn State (9-3) vs. No. 16 Kentucky (9-3), Tuesday, 1 p.m. Eastern (ABC)
Line: Penn State by 6 1/2.
Series Record: Penn State leads 3-2.
WHAT’S AT STAKE
The winner will finish with 10 wins, and that would be significant for Penn State and even more noteworthy for Kentucky, which hasn’t done it in 41 years. The Nittany Lions are trying to finish with double-digit wins in three consecutive seasons with the first time since 1980-82. The Wildcats have their best record since going 10-1 in 1977
Trace McSorley-led Penn State offense that’s averaging 424.3 yards and 34.6 points per game against a stingy Kentucky defense anchored by LB Josh Allen, the Southeastern Conference defensive player of the year. The Wildcats have allowed 332.2 yards per game and rank seventh nationally in scoring defense at 16.2.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Penn State: McSorley, who’ll become first Nittany Lions QB to throw a pass in four bowl games, has thrown for 2,284 yards and 16 touchdowns vs. six interceptions. RB Miles Sanders has averaged nearly 6 yards per carry on the way to rushing for 1,223 yards and nine TDs.
Kentucky: Allen led the SEC with 18 1/2 tackles for loss, including 14 sacks, which rank third nationally and are a school single-season record. RB Benny Snell Jr. rushed for 1,305 yards and 14 TDs to become one of two players in SEC history to run for 1,000 yards and scored at least 12 TDs in each of his first three seasons in college. The other is Herschel Walker.
FACTS & FIGURES
Penn State is making its 49th bowl appearance, 25th in a New Year’s game. … Kentucky is in a New Year’s Bowl for the fourth time. The Tim Couch-led Wildcats faced Penn State in the Outback Bowl on Jan. 1, 1999, losing 26-14.