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James Franklin Says Week 1 Matchup With Purdue 'Will be a Tremendous Challenge'

Purdue and Penn State are scheduled to open their seasons on Thursday, Sept. 1, at 8 p.m. ET inside Ross-Ade Stadium. The Nittany Lions will open their season against a Big Ten opponent for the third consecutive season.
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INDIANAPOLIS — Purdue and Penn State have known about their upcoming, season-opening matchup at Ross-Ade Stadium since early February. While the night of Sept. 1 is still more than a month away, Nittany Lions coach James Franklin is already sharing his respect for Jeff Brohm and the Boilermakers. 

The two teams are scheduled to kick off their seasons during a Thursday night battle in prime time. The game will be aired live on FOX at 8 p.m. ET. 

"Got a tremendous respect for Coach Brohm," Franklin said during Big Ten Football Media Days on Wednesday at Lucas Oil Stadium. "Got tremendous respect for Purdue University and what they've been able to do in night games and specifically blackout games. So that will be a tremendous challenge to open the season."

Purdue football announced that the opener will be a "Blackout" game in West Lafayette, a direct opposite to Penn State's traditional "White Out" games held inside Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania. 

Ohio State called for a blackout when the team played Penn State during the 2015 season in Columbus, and the Buckeyes came away with a 38-10 victory. 

Entering his ninth season with the Nittany Lions in 2022, Franklin has led the program to a 6-2 record in season openers. Both of those losses have come on the road, including a recent 36-35 overtime defeat at the hands of Indiana in 2020. 

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Including its matchup with Purdue, Penn State has opened with a Big Ten opponent in three consecutive seasons. 

"This is what you work for all offseason," Penn State senior defensive tackle PJ Mustipher said. "You don't work hard to not showcase the work you've been putting in, so what greater challenge than to go to Purdue on the road and be able to compete against them." 

Under Franklin, Penn State is 2-0 against Purdue with the two teams most recently coming together in State College back on Oct. 5, 2019. The matchup also marks the first meeting in West Lafayette since the 2016 season. The Nittany Lions own a nine-game win streak over the Boilermakers.

"I've heard a couple of guys around here say the atmosphere is incredible there at night. They have a great team, a talented team, so I'm excited. I know they're excited, and I can't wait until Sept. 1." 

  • WHAT JEFF BROHM SAID DURING BIG TEN FOOTBALL MEDIA DAYS: Purdue head coach Jeff Brohm kicked off the second day of Big Ten Football Media Days at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. He discussed a variety of topics, including the team's Week 1 matchup with Penn State. CLICK HERE 
  • KEVIN WARREN DISCUSSES BIG TEN EXPANSION, MEDIA RIGHTS DEAL: Kevin Warren opened the 2022 Big Ten Football Media Days on Tuesday by discussing several topics, including the potential for further conference expansion and the conference's upcoming media rights deal. CLICK HERE 

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