Halftime analysis: Penn State 20, Navy 0

September, 15, 2012
9/15/12
4:58
PM ET
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- Even with its top two tailbacks injured, Penn State might be playing its best offensive game of the season.

Curtis Dukes leads the team with 37 yards on seven carries, as the Lions' racked up 262 total yards to Navy's 130.

Matt McGloin also had one of the best halves of this career: He completed his first seven passes and has 196 yards and three touchdowns.

Stat of the half: Two. Number of 45-yard passes caught by Allen Robinson. Penn State hasn't thrown a pass longer than 30 yards this season, so having two pass plays that gained more than 40 yards has really helped PSU spread the field.

Player of the half: Robinson. He's already reached his career-high in yardage -- and it's just been two quarters. Robinson has four catches for 111 yards and two touchdowns.

What's working for PSU: Passing game. McGloin is 11-of-16 for 196 yards and three touchdowns. Navy's secondary appears overmatched, and McGloin is throwing downfield on intermediate and deep routes more often than ever before.

What's not working for PSU: Stopping runs on the outside. Penn State's playing a pretty solid game, but the one element that needs improvement is stopping the option when it creeps to the outside. Navy drove down the field once because PSU couldn't contain those plays. For PSU to pull away even more in this game, it needs to shore up its defense there.

Offensive play of the half: McGloin found Allen Robinson along the left sideline for a 20-yard catch, but Robinson juked the defender, cut inside and took it another 25 yards for the score. It put PSU ahead 14-0 in the first quarter.

Defensive play of the half: With Navy threatening in the first quarter, linebacker Gerald Hodges made a leaping interception to halt the Middies' drive 11 yards from the end zone. That was the closest Navy's been to putting points on the board. PSU converted that turnover into a touchdown.

Pressing concern: Sam Ficken missed his second extra point of the season when he lined up after Penn State's third touchdown of the first half.

He made just 1-of-5 field goals last week and missed an extra point, so it doesn't seem as if he's made a big improvement.

Josh Moyer | email

Penn State/Big Ten reporter

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