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Penn State manhandles Akron 52-0 in season opener

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Saquan Barkley rushed for 172 yards and two touchdowns on 14 carries, while Trace McSorley went 18 of 25 for 280 yards and a pair of scores in the Nittany Lions' 52-0 win over Akron in State College Saturday.

State College, PA — On a soggy Saturday afternoon the No. 6 Penn State Nittany Lions (1-0) lit up the scoreboard against in a 52-0 rout of the Akron Zips (0-1) at Beaver Stadium. 

Here are the game's “Cheers and Jeers.”

CHEERS
Defense forcing turnovers:
The defense came out in full force throughout the game, but early in the game made their presence known in big ways. Manny Bowen was flying around the field early and often accumulating five tackles. 

Ryan Bucholz forced a fumble that Akron recovered in the first quarter, however, it was Amani Oruwariye who forced the Zips to give the ball back to Penn State with an incredible leaping interception along the sidelines. SEE THE PLAY HERE

It was Oruwariye's second career interception and part of a three tackle day for the redshirt junior. 

Special Teams: 
It had been nine years since Penn State had a punt returner take one to the house until DeAndre Thompkins changed that with a 61 yard punt return for a touchdown in the first quarter. 

Thompkins return was the first of its kind since 2008 when Derrick Williams returned a punt 63 yards to pay dirt. 

The 61-yard return was the catapult for Thompkins that saw him accumulate 127-yards on four returns. 

The Saquon Barkley Show:
Saquon Barkley is a household name throughout the world of college football. On Saturday afternoon, his skills were out in full force as he avoided would be tacklers like so: CLICK HERE

And jumping over them like this: CLICK HERE

The guy is good, real good. Barkley wound up with 246 total yards with 172-yards coming via runs and 54-yards by way of receptions. The junior running back finished with two touchdowns on the day.

JEERS
Starters in the game in the third quarter:
Barkley and Trace McSorley are both key players for the Nittany Lions who will dictate how far this team goes throughout the season. That being said, as much fun as they are to watch on the field, they both had no business being in during the third quarter while the game was already way out of hand.

An injury to either Barkley or McSorley would be catastrophic to the Penn State team and would most likely hinder their chances at repeating as Big Ten Champions. 

Highlight of the Game

The highlight of the game comes from Barkley. CLICK HERE

Watching Barkley make defenses look silly like this will never get old. He makes mundane plays look fun and put you on the edge of your seat.

Up Next
Penn State stays within the friendly confines of Beaver Stadium next week as the host rival Pittsburgh in the Keystone Classic. The Nittany Lions lost 42-39 to the Panthers last season at Heinz Field and look to avenge that loss in front of 107,000 faithful. Next Saturday was selected as the game that will honor last season's Big Ten Championship squad as they will be honored pregame and have 2016 added to the facade of the stadium.

The Panthers edged Youngstown State Saturday afternoon.

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