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PENN STATE NOTESDecember 05, 2010
PENN STATE IN 2010: The Nittany Lions come into the Outback Bowl with a 7-5 record. Three of their losses came to top 10 ranked opponents. The Lions rank in the top three of the Big Ten in six statistical categories including Pass Defense, Opponents 3rd Down Conversions and fewest penalties which also ranks third nationally.
WELCOME BACK: This will be the Penn State’s fourth appearance in this bowl in its 25 year history. The Nittany Lions are 3-0 in Tampa defeating Auburn 43-14 in 1996, Kentucky 26-14 in 1999, and beating Tennessee 20-10 in 2007.
PENN STATE TRADITION: This is the 124th year of football at Penn State. The Nittany Lions are 818-356-42 making them the seventh winningest team in college football history. Along the way they have compiled seven undefeated, untied regular seasons since 1966, two National Championships and 43 bowl appearances. Over the years Penn State players have won every major award at the collegiate and professional levels including the Heisman Trophy. Twenty players and coaches have been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.
PENN STATE IN THE BOWLS: This is the 43rd bowl appearance for the Nittany Lions and the 27th January bowl. Penn State’s bowl record is 27-13-2, the best bowl winning percentage in the nation (66.7%).
FEATURE PLAYERS: The Penn State defense is anchored by LB Chris Colasanti who leads the team with 102 tackles and has 8 tackles for a loss. LB Nate Stupar has 72 tackles and 6.5 TFL, and CB D’Anton Lynn compiled 71 tackles and 2 Int. Second team All-Big Ten DL Ollie Ogbu notched 46 tackles and 8.5 TFL. DT Devon Still leads the team with 4 sacks.
The Lions offense boasts a balanced attack through the air and on the ground. True freshman Rob Bolden started the season’s first seven games before being injured against Minnesota. He completed 112 passes out of 193 attempts (58%) for 1,360 yards and 5 TDs. Sophomore Matt McGloin took over the starting job for the final stretch of the season completing 58% (101-174) of his attempts for 1,337 yards and 13 TDs with just 4 interceptions. Their favorite target is WR Derek Moye who caught 48 passes for 806 yards and 7 TDs. WR Brett Brackett has 37 receptions for 495 yards and 5 TDs, while WR Justin Brown notched 31 catches for 439 yards.
Penn State’s ground game is led by veteran and All-Big Ten RB Evan Royster who gained 916 yards on 188 carries for a 4.9 yard average, and 6 TDs behind the blocking by First Team All-Big Ten guard Stefen Wisniewski. TB Silas Redd added 424 yards for a 6.1 average per carry including a season high 131 yards against Northwestern.
THE COACH: Head Coach Joe Paterno is in his 45th year at the helm of the Nittany Lions and is the winningest coach in Division IA compiling a 401-134-3 record. Paterno is a five-time AFCA National Coach of the Year and has guided his teams two National Championships, seven undefeated, untied regular seasons, and 37 bowl games. He was the first active college coach ever to receive the “Distinguished American” award from the National Football Foundation and College Football Hall of Fame and has been inducted into the Hall of Fame.