Penn State Announces No Fans This Fall Season, Likely Killing Its White Out Home Field Advantage Against Ohio State

By Kevin Harrish on August 6, 2020 at 11:30 am
White Out

Penn State's biggest home-field advantage is likely gone.

When the Buckeyes face the Nittany Lions in Happy Valley this season, they'll be doing it under much calmer conditions than usual as Penn State is moving forward without spectators for its fall sports due to COVID-19.

In an open letter, Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics Sandy Barbour "under the current conditions and current state orders," Penn State will continue without fans in general seating areas.

"We continue to refine our plans to welcome Nittany Lion fans, should the conditions and orders be revised to accommodate spectators at events," Barbour said, however Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf said Thursday that the state's guidance is no sports until Jan. 1 due to large groups, which would rule out fans all season.

This news, of course, would mean that Ohio State won't have to face Penn State's famed White Out crowd.

Happy Valley is considered one of the most hostile places to play in all of college football, especially during their White Out games, and Ohio State's last few trips to Penn State illustrate that.

The Buckeyes' are 2-1 their last three trips to Happy Valley with all three games coming down to the wire, even though Ohio State was favored by an average of 12 points in each contest.

In 2014, Ohio State headed into Beaver Stadium as a 14.5-point favorite but needed overtime heroics for J.T. Barrett on an injured knee to keep the national championship season alive.

In 2016, the Buckeyes did not escape Happy Valley with a win despite entering the game as an 18-point favorite. Ohio State managed just 21 points and lost due to a blocked field goal returned for a touchdown late in the game.

The 2018 edition of Penn State's White Out featured the most dramatic game as the Buckeyes erased a 12-point Nittany Lion lead in under 7 minutes to claim a 27-26 victory. Still, Ohio State didn't cover the spread, as the Buckeyes were 3.5-point favorites.

But there will be no White Out and no crowd this year when the Buckeyes head to Happy Valley. And frankly, good riddance.

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