CBS Sports ranks Big Ten schedules by strength in 2022

Penn State is gearing up for what they hope will be a great rebounding season. But the schedule doesn’t give the Nittany Lions too many easy outs in 2022. But how does Penn State’s schedule in general compare in terms of difficulty with the rest of the schools in the Big Ten? That’s what CBS Sports weighed in this week.

Tom Fornelli looked at every schedule played by Big Ten teams in 2022 and offered his thoughts on which team has the hardest schedule, which is the easiest, and how the rest of the conference fits in between. Penn State’s schedule comes right in the middle of the conference according to Fornell.

Here’s some of what Fornelli had to say about Penn State’s schedule for 2022;

Penn State’s road game against Auburn looked a lot harder when it was scheduled than it could be when the teams take to the field. It’s still a road race against an SEC team, but it’s an SEC team that many believe could finish last in its division this season. The Lions fill the nonconference with home games against Ohio and Central Michigan, which are both tough. What keeps the Penn State scheme from ranking higher than this is its Western appeal. Getting Purdue, Northwestern and Minnesota (only Purdue is on the way in the season opener) is the best draw Penn State could hope for.

These are distant notes about Penn State’s schedule. The road trip to Auburn, while not necessarily easy, could have been more challenging had the game been played a few years ago. Penn State defeated Auburn in a competitive game last season, but the Tigers are a team headed in the wrong direction. Penn State should still have their hands full for that mid-September game in the South.

And the matchups against the Big Ten West Division are about as favorable as you can get, as each year without any games against Wisconsin and Iowa will generally be under the current format. But Minnesota and Purdue can still be tough opponents for the Nittany Lions. Penn State opens the season in Purdue in a potentially dangerous spot to open, and Minnesota is wedged between games against Michigan and Ohio State in a trap for Penn State.

Penn State gets Ohio State home, which usually leads to a better chance of upsetting the Buckeyes if history is any indication. And Michigan State will make the trip to Happy Valley to wrap up the regular season, and who knows what both teams will look like at the end of the season.

Fornelli also states that it would be a wise move to give Penn State more than 8.5 wins this season.

See how the Big Ten schemes are doing according to Fornelli via CBS Sports


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