Penn State-Alabama clash set for primetime on ESPN

University Park, Pa. — The highly-anticipated renewal of the Penn State-Alabama rivalry is set for a primetime kick and a national television audience.

The first game between the traditional powers in 20 years will played Sept. 11 in Tuscaloosa and kick at 7 p.m. ET/6 p.m. CT in Bryant-Denny Stadium. ESPN will televise the clash to a national audience.

The contest is the Nittany Lions' sixth announced start time for the upcoming season, with at least four of the games set to air on ESPN, ESPN2 or ABC. Penn State will play three night games during the 2010 season.

Alabama will travel to Beaver Stadium on Sept. 10, 2011 for its first visit to Happy Valley since 1989. The Crimson Tide won the 2009 BCS national championship with a 14-0 record and will likely be ranked No. 1 in the pre-season polls.

The upcoming Penn State-Alabama games were originally scheduled to be played in 2004 and '05, but were postponed at Alabama's request in 2003.

Alabama and Penn State rank sixth and seventh in the nation in all-time victories, with 813 and 811, respectively.

The Nittany Lions and Crimson Tide have met 13 times, with the first three contests coming in bowl games and the last 10 in a compelling series from 1981-90. Alabama leads the series, 8-5, but Penn State won the last meeting, 9-0, in Tuscaloosa in 1990. The Nittany Lions have a 2-1 record in Bryant-Denny Stadium, and are 0-2 vs. the Crimson Tide in Birmingham and 2-3 in Beaver Stadium.

Penn State won the first meeting with Alabama, 7-0, in the 1959 Liberty Bowl in Phladelphia. The Crimson Tide won 13-6 on Dec. 31, 1975 in the first Sugar Bowl played in the Louisiana Superdome. Alabama also captured a 14-7 win in the epic 1979 Sugar Bowl for the national championship on New Year's Day.

Three additional Penn State games this season are set to air on ESPN, ESPN2 or ABC:

Sept. 18 vs. Kent State, noon on ESPN or ESPN2
Oct. 2 at Iowa, 8 p.m. ET/7 p.m. CT on ESPN, ESPN2 or ABC
Oct. 30 vs. Michigan, 8 p.m. ET on ESPN, ESPN2 or ABC

Penn State will host Youngstown State in its Sept. 4 season opener prior to the clash with Alabama. The YSU game will kick at noon ET in Beaver Stadium and be televised by the Big Ten Network.

The Nittany Lions' 91st Homecoming Game, Oct. 9 vs. Illinois, will kick at noon ET and air on Big Ten Network, ESPN or ESPN2.

The Big Ten Network is available in 75 million homes in the United States and Canada on DirecTV, Dish Network and Verizon FiOS and 300 cable providers, including Atlantic Broadband, Cablevision, CATV Service, Comcast, Nittany Media, RCN, Service Electric and Time-Warner in Pennsylvania. The network is available in 46 states and 19 of the nation's top 20 markets.

Armstrong, Blue Ridge, MetroCast and Adams Cable, though, do not carry the Big Ten Network in Pennsylvania. More than 35,000 Penn State alumni live in the communities served by the four cable providers in Pennsylvania and the Youngstown, Ohio area.

Future Penn State contests may be selected by the networks under the six and 12-day provisions of their contracts with the Big Ten Conference.

Penn State is 51-13 (79.7) since the start of the 2005 season, tied for the nation's No. 7 winning percentage over that span. The Nittany Lions earned their second consecutive 11-2 record last season, capped by a win over LSU in the Capital One Bowl, Penn State's fourth bowl victory in the past five seasons. Penn State posted its 23rd final Top 10 ranking under Hall of Fame coach Joe Paterno.

The Nittany Lions return 36 letterwinners for the 2010 season, including 13 starters (7 offense, 5 defense, 1 specialist), as well as 10 players that have starting experience.

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2010 Penn State Football Schedule

 

Sept. 4 - Youngstown State, noon (Big Ten Network)
Sept. 11 - at Alabama, 7 p.m. ET/6 p.m. CT (ESPN)
Sept. 18 - Kent State, noon (ESPN or ESPN2)
Sept. 25 - Temple, TBA
Oct. 2 - at Iowa, 8 p.m. ET/7 p.m. CT (ESPN, ESPN2 or ABC)
Oct. 9 - Illinois, noon (Big Ten Network, ESPN or ESPN2)
Oct. 23 - at Minnesota, TBA
Oct. 30 - Michigan, 8 p.m. ET (ESPN, ESPN2 or ABC)
Nov. 6 - Northwestern, TBA
Nov. 13 - at Ohio State, TBA
Nov. 20 - vs. Indiana, at FedEx Field, TBA
Nov. 27 - vs. Michigan State, TBA

Contacts: 
Last Updated November 18, 2010