Penn State Football

There won't be any fans in the stands to rush the field if Penn State upsets Ohio State Saturday, like they did in this Oct. 22, 2016 file photo.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

 

On Saturday, Penn State’s football team will host the Ohio State Buckeyes at Beaver Stadium without fans due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The university is providing on-campus students with new and safe ways to watch the game. 

Gates to Beaver Stadium on Penn State's University Park campus in summer 2020.
Min Xian / WPSU

Penn State will have a football season this year after all, and despite precautions the university says it will take, concerns remain in the community about whether home games could contribute to an increase in COVID-19 cases.

Penn State and other Big Ten universities voted unanimously to have a football season this fall, starting the weekend of Oct. 23.

In its announcement, the Big Ten outlined various precautions it says schools will take. Student-athletes will be tested daily, as will coaches and trainers.

Barry Reeger / Associated Press

Leaders of the Big Ten universities voted unanimously to have a football season this fall, starting the weekend of Oct. 23, according to a news release Wednesday morning.

Penn State's Beaver Stadium is usually packed for "Whiteout games," but due to COVID-19 there will be no fans this Saturday.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

Pointing to health concerns from the COVID-19 pandemic and the uncertainty surrounding them, the Big Ten announced Tuesday afternoon that it is postponing fall 2020 sports, including football.

“Our primary responsibility is to make the best possible decisions in the interest of our students, faculty and staff,” said Morton Schapiro, chair of the Big Ten Council of Presidents/Chancellors and Northwestern University president.

Penn State Athletics Director Sandy Barbour in a face mask at the beginning of an online press conference Thursday, Aug. 6, 2020.
Anne Danahy / WPSU

Penn State Athletics is planning for the football team to play in an empty stadium this fall, but the department does have a seating plan for about 23,000 people if the state changes the rules limiting crowd sizes.

Even with those plans, Athletic Director Sandy Barbour left open the possibility that the football team won’t play at all. 

“The virus will determine whether we play or not,” Barbour said Thursday during a press conference.

Penn State Athletics Director Sandy Barbour taking off a face mask at the beginning of an online press conference Wednesday, July 1, 2020.
Anne Danahy / WPSU

Penn State Athletics Director Sandy Barbour said during a news conference Wednesday that no student athletes have tested positive for COVID-19 so far out of 102 tested.

Barbour said Athletics will report its results publicly every two weeks. She said that will happen at least until students return for the fall semester, and then will be reevaluated.

The university has said it will make its overall testing results data public.

Penn State's Beaver Stadium is usually packed for "Whiteout games," but due to COVID-19 there will be no fans this Saturday.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

Each year, the Blue-White game draws tens of thousands of people to the University Park campus. The scrimmage gives Nittany Lions fans a preview of the football players and serves as a popular social event.

But now, as the number of known cases of the coronavirus in the United States continues to climb, Penn State is reviewing its upcoming events, including the annual Blue-White Game, scheduled for April 18.

Ex-player Sues Penn State Over Football Hazing Allegations

Jan 14, 2020
Penn State head coach James Franklin celebrates with his team as Penn State plays Memphis in the first half of the NCAA Cotton Bowl college football game, Saturday, Dec. 28, 2019, in Arlington, Texas.
Ron Jenkins / AP Photo

A former Penn State football player claims in a new federal lawsuit that other Nittany Lions players hazed him and other younger teammates.

The allegations in the lawsuit filed Monday include claims that some players imitated sexual acts in the shower. The claims also include threats of older players saying, “I am going to Sandusky you," to younger players. Jerry Sandusky was the team's retired longtime defensive coordinator when he was convicted in 2012 of sexual abuse of 10 boys, including physical attacks on university property.

In this file photo, Penn State head coach James Franklin responds to a question during the Big Ten Conference NCAA college football media days Friday, July 19, 2019, in Chicago.
Charles Rex Arbogast / AP Photo

A former Penn State team doctor is suing the school, football coach James Franklin and athletic director Sandy Barbour, claiming he was ousted after complaining to school officials about being pressured to clear players to return from injuries.

Photo courtesy of Aaron Maybin

You might remember Aaron Maybin from his time on the football field at Penn State or in the NFL. These days, he's doing something much different. He's an artist, activist, and educator in his hometown of Baltimore and talked with us about the way that those things intersect.

John Urschel is a PhD candidate in applied mathematics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and is the author of several peer-reviewed papers.

Urschel is also a former offensive lineman for the Baltimore Ravens and the Penn State Nittany Lions. He graduated from Penn State with a bachelors and master’s degree in mathematics all with a 4.0 grade point average.

He was also awarded the William V. Campbell Trophy in 2013, which honors the top college football scholar-athlete in the nation. In 2017, he was named one of Forbes’s 30 Under 30 in science.

In this Jan. 22, 2012 file photo, a woman pays her respects at a statue of former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno outside Beaver Stadium on the Penn State University campus after learning of his death in State College, Pa. Paterno was 85.
Gene J. Puskar / AP

Since the Sandusky scandal, Penn State hasn’t publicly commemorated former head football coach, Joe Paterno. That will change this Saturday at the matchup against Temple - and it’s reignited a debate about how and if Paterno should be recognized.

“We thought it was too soon, it was insensitive and just not the right time.”

Lauren Davis is the opinions editor at the Penn State student newspaper, The Daily Collegian. She recently wrote an editorial arguing against the tribute.

Players gather around weight equipment
Mary Chuff / WPSu

The 2015 Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts was in full swing Saturday morning. But, in a northeast corner of the Penn State campus, the football team was in the middle of a workout under the hot sun. This workout was a little different than their normal conditioning routine.

The offense competed against the defense in events such as sled pull relays, deadlifts, tugs-of-war and other strength exercises.

Fran Fisher and Joe Paterno
Pat Little / Associated Press

Penn State broadcaster Fran Fisher passed away this morning at the age of 91.

Fisher had been involved with Penn State Athletics since 1966. He served as Penn State Football Radio Network’s color commentator until 1970, when he took over as the play-by-play announcer. Fisher left radio in 1983, but continued to hold many positions at Penn State, including Assistant Athletics Director. He also lead the team that developed the current Penn State logo. 

Fisher's son, Jerry Fisher, posted this tweet after his father's passing.

Penn State has its vacated football wins back. In the wake of the Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal, the NCAA took away the team’s wins under Joe Paterno from 1998 to 2011. The restoration is part of the settlement of a lawsuit brought by a Pennsylvania state senator.

The lost wins and a 60 million dollar fine were among the last remaining sanctions agreed to by Penn State in a 2012 consent decree to avoid a complete shutdown of the Football program. A bowl ban, scholarship reductions, and other sanctions were repealed last year.

Penn State's Beaver Stadium is usually packed for "Whiteout games," but due to COVID-19 there will be no fans this Saturday.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

The Penn State football team is now bowl game eligible. The NCAA announced a lift on Penn State’s postseason ban Monday, effective immediately. The news directly followed the release of former Senator and independent monitor George Mitchell’s second annual report on the school’s compliance with sanctions levied after the Sandusky scandal. Mitchell’s review of Penn State’s progress was glowing—he applauded the university’s institution of a new compliance system, which encourages transparency and communication with Penn State leadership.