McSorley, a redshirt junior in his second season as a starter, beat the Buckeyes 24-21 in his first try last season but did not put up good numbers. He completed 8 of 23 passes for 154 yards with one touchdown. He rushed 19 times for 63 yards and a score.
Ohio State interviews: Penn State week
Urban Meyer press conference: Penn State week
McSorley lifted Penn State to a 42-13 victory over Michigan on Saturday, completing 17 of 26 passes for 282 yards with a touchdown and interception. He rushed for 76 yards on 11 carries and scored three touchdowns.
“The thing that, a lot like our quarterback, separates him is his competitive spirit is off the charts,” Ohio State coach Urban Meyer said. “I really got to watch him on TV last week. I really haven’t done that before. That one play in particular, going to his left in the red zone where he scored, he made a couple of people miss. He lunged. He’s not the biggest guy (6-foot, 195 pounds), but he competes so hard. That’s what makes J.T. Barrett so special and Alex Smith and Tim Tebow. They’re all different sizes and shapes and forms yet the common trait of winners is competitive spirit.”
RELATED: One of biggest games of Meyer era
This will be the biggest test for Ohio State’s defense since the 31-16 loss to Oklahoma and its star quarterback Baker Mayfield. Ohio State’s secondary gets a chance to show the gains it has made in a five-game winning streak are real.
“I believe in our players,” Ohio State defensive coordinator Greg Schiano said. “I think we have really fine players, and they’re trying their guts out to get ready for this game. They’ve been doing that. That’s why you play the games. That’s the challenge. That’s exciting.”
Penn State at Ohio State, 3:30 p.m., FOX, 1410