When Penn State opens the 2023 season at home against West Virginia, it will revive one of its historic local rivalries for the first time since before joining the Big Ten in 1993. As if the return of this fun local competition weren’t reason enough, CBS Sports has ranked the game as one of the top nonconference games in college football for the 2017 season.
To celebrate the start of the 100-day countdown to the start of the 2018 college football season, CBS Sports just compiled a list of 100 college football stories, opportunities, and more. The top 20 nonconference games to look forward to this season were ranked on the list, albeit not in any real particular order. The Nittany Lions and Mountaineers’ season opener was one of the first games mentioned, followed by Colorado’s road trip to TCU (Deion Sanders’ training debut with the Buffaloes against the runner-up in last year’s College Football Playoff) and Florida’s road trip to Utah for the second half of their home-and-home series.
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The home matchup between Penn State and West Virginia will be the first conference between the two schools since 1992. In 1993, Penn State joined the Big Ten, while West Virginia played its first two seasons of collegiate football in the Big East before moving on to its current home in the Big 12. According to Winsipedia, Penn State has a 48-9-2 advantage over the Mountaineers overall. Before the series’ lengthy break, it had a four-game winning streak that spanned the years 1989 through 1992.
Season-opening action between Penn State and West Virginia will air in primetime on NBC, a recent Big Ten media rights partner. Penn State will enter the season with great hopes for a potential New Years Six bowl game at the end of the season and, if things go incredibly well, perhaps its very first appearance in the College Football Playoff. This video game will also include the beginning of quarterback Drew Allar’s tenure. West Virginia is entering its fifth season under head coach Neal Brown after a challenging 5-7 campaign, which puts him in a little bit of a bind for the upcoming campaign.