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Saturday, August 21, 2010

Pennsylvania State University Nittany Lions Football Uniform and Team History


Pennsylvania State University Nittany Lions

1. This document was created by Scott Sillcox to provide information about:
- the uniform images depicted in poster shown above
- the particular players whose uniforms are shown in the poster
- the history of Penn State football
- the Penn State’s football stadium
- the Penn State football team in general

If you would like to read an even more detailed version of this document in pdf form with approximately 30 accompanying images, please visit:
www.mapleleafproductions.com/downloads/PennStateFootballUniformProject.pdf

2. Please note that all of the actual original, one-of-a-kind artwork of the Pennsylvania State University football uniforms as seen in the poster above are actually available for sale. These watercolor paintings are truly beautiful, original watercolor paintings, and there are only 14 of them so please act quickly if you would like to buy one. These would make a wonderfully memorable, beautiful and completely unique gift for someone who loves Penn State football.

If you would like more information about this great artwork including the three ways you could purchase each piece, please visit our Penn State YouTube video at www.youtube.com/watch?v=yhCmP0cINJY or go directly to the artwork website www.heritagesportsart.com/Penn-State-Nittany-Lions-c91/ where you can see and purchase the artwork.

3. General Information about the Pennsylvania State University Nittany Lions Football Team

Pennsylvania State University, a state-related land-grant university, has 24 campuses throughout the state of Pennsylvania - with the main campus being at University Park. With enrollment over 84,000 students, it is among the ten largest public universities in the United States.

The Nittany Lions, who played their first season of football in 1887, play out of Beaver Stadium, which was built in 1960 and seats 106,537 spectators.

Penn State boasts an excellent tradition of football success; countless Nittany Lions have extended their football careers in the NFL, Arena League and the CFL. Notable Nittany Lions alumni include: Leon Gajecki, Lenny Moore, Mike Reid, John Cappelletti and Paul Posluszny.

4. For more information on Penn State football, you may want to visit these great websites:

The official Pennsylvania State University football team site can be found at:
http://gopsusports.cstv.com/sports/m-footbl/psu-m-footbl-body.html

The following website offers an excellent summary page of Pennsylvania State University football, including a summary of Conference Championships; National Championships; Bowl Games; Coaches; Selected individual player records:
http://www.nationalchamps.net/NCAA/database/pennstate_database.htm

For further information and a view of Beaver Stadium, please visit:
http://football.ballparks.com/NCAA/Big10/PennState/index.htm
Note: this site is also a good resource for additional past & present NCAA stadiums.


5. Description and history of the uniforms depicted in the University of Penn State poster:

A quick note about the National Rankings and Polls shown below:
If Penn State was nationally ranked in "The Top 20" (or Top 10 in some years) in a particular season depicted in the poster, we show the team’s ranking. That being said, prior to 1936 there was no nationally recognized poll ranking the nation’s top teams, so you will not see any rankings prior to 1936.

From 1936 onward, we show the results of one, and then two, end-of-season polls annually ranking the Top 20 (or Top 10) college football teams. There have been various other polls over the years, but we have chosen to show the results of two polls.
1. The Associated Press (AP) Poll began in 1936 and is a poll of sportswriters. It continues to this day.
2. The United Press International (UP) Poll began in 1950 and is a poll of coaches. By 1993 it had became known as the USA Today/CNN poll, and by 1997 the USA Today/ESPN poll.


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1887

This painting honors the inaugural 1887 Pennsylvania State University football team. Captained by George Linsz and ‘advised’ by Professor Nelson E. Cleaver, the 1887 team went 2-0, outscoring their opponents 78-0.


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1905

This painting honors the 1905 Pennsylvania State University football team. Coached by Tom Fennell and captained by Ed Yeckley, the 1905 team went 8-3, outscoring their opponents 195-34.


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1922

This painting (which is not shown here because it is not being offered for sale) honors the 1922 Pennsylvania State University football team. The 1922 team, coached by Hugo Bezdek, captained by Newsh Bentz and featuring players such as Joe Bedenk and Harry "Light Horse" Wilson (who would be voted All American in 1923), went 6-4-1. The team would ultimately lose 14-3 in the Rose Bowl against the University of Southern California.


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1928

This painting honors the 1928 Pennsylvania State University football team. The 1928 team, coached by Hugo Bezdek and co-captained by Don Greenshields and Steve Hamas, went 3-5-1.


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1939

This painting honors the 1939 Pennsylvania State University football team and #26, worn by Center Leon Gajecki (who would be voted All American in 1940). The 1939 team, coached by Bob Higgins and captained by Spike Alter, went 5-1-2.


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1947

This painting honors the 1947 Pennsylvania State University football team and #32, worn by Steve Suhey. The 1947 team, coached by Bob Higgins and co-captained by John Nolan and John Potsklan, went undefeated at 9-0-1.

The 1947 team played Southern Methodist University in the Cotton Bowl and tied 13-13.
Here is how they ranked in the AP (Associated Press) poll for that season:

AP Rank Team
1 Notre Dame
2 Michigan
3 SMU
4 Penn State
5 Texas
6 Alabama
7 Pennsylvania
8 USC
9 North Carolina
10 Georgia Tech
11 Army
12 Kansas
13 Mississippi
14 William & Mary
15 California
16 Oklahoma
17 North Carolina State
18 Rice
19 Duke
20 Columbia

Steve Suhey was a Guard for Pennsylvania State University and was voted All-American in 1947. Following his career at Penn State, Steve played for the Pittsburgh Steelers.

He is a member of the Pennsylvania State University Hall of Fame.

He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1985.

He went on to the NFL where he played for 2 seasons.

Here is what our friends at Wikipedia have to say about Steve Suhey.


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1948

This painting honors the 1948 Pennsylvania State University football team and #85, worn by Sam Tamburo. The 1948 team, coached by Bob Higgins and captained by Joe Colone, went 7-1-1, outscoring their opponents 219-55.

Here is how the 1948 team ranked in the AP (Associated Press) poll for that season:

AP Rank Team
1 Michigan
2 Notre Dame
3 North Carolina
4 California
5 Oklahoma
6 Army
7 Northwestern
8 Georgia
9 Oregon
10 SMU
11 Clemson
12 Vanderbilt
13 Tulane
14 Michigan State
15 Mississippi
16 Minnesota
17 William & Mary
18 Penn State
19 Cornell
20 Wake Forest

Sam Tamburo played End for Pennsylvania State University and was voted
All-American in 1948. Following his career at Penn State, Sam played 1 season in the NFL for the New York Bulldogs.


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1954

This painting honors the 1954 Pennsylvania State University football team and #42, worn by Lenny Moore. The 1954 team, coached by Rip Engle and co-captained by Don Balthaser and Jim Garrity, went 7-2.

Here is how the 1954 team ranked in the UP (United Press) and AP (Associated Press) polls for that season:

UP Rank AP Rank Team
2 1 Ohio State
1 2 UCLA
3 3 Oklahoma
4 4 Notre Dame
5 5 Navy
6 6 Mississippi
7 7 Army
12 8 Maryland
10 9 Wisconsin
8 10 Arkansas
9 11 Miami
12 West Virginia
13 Auburn
14 14 Duke
15 15 Michigan
16 Virginia Tech
11 17 USC
18 Baylor
18 19 Rice
15 20 Penn State

Lenny Moore was a Halfback for Pennsylvania State University. Following his career at Penn State, Lenny played for the Baltimore Colts and was named NFC Rookie of the Year in 1956. During his NFL playing days, he was given many different nicknames including: "Sputnik", the "Reading Rocket", "Lightning Lenny" and "Spats", and played alongside legendary Quarterback Johnny Unitas in both the Flanker and Halfback positions.

He went on to the NFL where he played for 12 seasons.

He was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1975.

Here is what our friends at Wikipedia have to say about Lenny Moore.


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1969

This painting honors the 1969 Pennsylvania State University football team and #68, worn by Mike Reid. The 1969 team, coached by the legendary Joe Paterno and
co-captained by Reid, Steve Smear and Tom Jackson, went undefeated at 11-0, outscoring their opponents 322-90.

The 1969 team played Missouri in the Orange Bowl and won 10-3, with Quarterback Chuck Burkhart being named ‘Most Valuable Back’ and Defensive Tackle Mike Reid being named ‘Most Valuable Lineman’. Here is how the 1969 team ranked in the UP (United Press) and AP (Associated Press) polls for that season:

UP Rank AP Rank Team
1 1 Texas
2 2 Penn State
4 3 USC
5 4 Ohio State
9 5 Notre Dame
6 6 Missouri
3 7 Arkansas
13 8 Mississippi
8 9 Michigan
7 10 LSU
12 11 Nebraska
16 12 Houston
10 13 UCLA
17 14 Florida
11 15 Tennessee
16 Colorado
18 17 West Virginia
18 18 Purdue
14 19 Stanford
15 20 Auburn
18 San Diego State

Mike Reid was a Defensive Tackle for Pennsylvania State University and received a multitude of awards and recognition during the 1969 season. He was not only voted
All-American, but also won the Outland Trophy - presented to the best interior lineman in college football and the Maxwell Award - given to the outstanding player in collegiate football. He finished 5th in balloting for the Heisman Trophy - awarded to the outstanding intercollegiate football player in the United States and was a co-MVP in the January 1, 1970 Orange Bowl. Following his career at Penn State, Mike played for the Cincinnati Bengals, before becoming an accomplished musician/songwriter - winning a Grammy Award in 1984 for Best Country Song.

He is a member of the Pennsylvania State University Hall of Fame.

He was recognized as the 141st best College Football Player of all time by the College Football News in their 2000-ish ranking.

He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1987.

He went on to the NFL where he played for 5 seasons.

Here is what our friends at Wikipedia have to say about Mike Reid.


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1973

This painting honors the 1973 Pennsylvania State University football team and #22, worn by John Cappelletti. The 1973 team, coached by the legendary Joe Paterno and
co-captained by Cappelletti, Randy Crowder, Mark Markovich and Ed O’Neil, went undefeated at 12-0.

The 1973 team played Louisiana State University in the Orange Bowl and won 16-9, with Quarterback Tom Shuman being name ‘Most Valuable Back’ and Defensive Tackle Randy Crowder being named ‘Most Valuable Lineman’. Here is how the 1973 team ranked in the UP (United Press) and AP (Associated Press) polls for that season:

UP Rank *before Bowl Games
AP Rank Team
4 1 Notre Dame
3 2 Ohio State
2 3 Oklahoma
1 4 Alabama
5 5 Penn State
6 6 Michigan
11 7 Nebraska
7 8 USC
10 9 Arizona State
13 10 Houston
11 11 Texas Tech
9 12 UCLA
14 13 LSU
8 14 Texas
17 15 Miami Ohio
16 North Carolina State
17 Missouri
15 18 Kansas
19 Tennessee
18 20 Maryland
15 20 Tulane

John Cappelletti, also known as "Cappy", was a Halfback for Pennsylvania State University. In the 1973 season, he was not only voted All-American, but also won the Maxwell Award - given to the outstanding player in collegiate football, as well as the Heisman Trophy - awarded to the outstanding intercollegiate football player in the United States. He was one of only two players in Penn State history to win the prestigious Walter Camp Player-of-the-Year award (also Tailback Larry Johnson, 2002) and rushed for over 200 yards in three straight games - which was an NCAA record at the time. Following his career at Penn State, John played for the Los Angeles Rams and the San Diego Chargers.

He is a member of the Pennsylvania State University Hall of Fame.

He was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1993.

He went on to the NFL where he played for 9 seasons.

Here is what our friends at Wikipedia have to say about John Cappelletti.


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1982

This painting honors the 1982 Pennsylvania State University football team and #25, worn by Curt Warner. The 1982 team, coached by the legendary Joe Paterno and
co-captained by Walker Lee Ashley, Ken Kelley, Stuart McMunn and Pete Speros,
went 11-1.

Penn State was crowned with its first National Championship in 1982, after a run of
7-straight victories following a mid-season loss to Alabama. They capped off their championship season by beating Georgia 27-23 in the Sugar Bowl - where Todd Blackledge would be named ‘Outstanding Player’. Here is how the 1982 team ranked in the UP (United Press) and AP (Associated Press) polls for that season:

UP Rank AP Rank Team
1 1 Penn State
2 2 SMU
3 3 Nebraska
4 4 Georgia
5 5 UCLA
6 6 Arizona State
7 7 Washington
*On Probation 8 Clemson
8 9 Arkansas
9 10 Pittsburgh
11 11 LSU
12 12 Ohio State
10 13 Florida State
14 14 Auburn
*On Probation 15 USC
16 16 Oklahoma
18 17 Texas
13 18 North Carolina
19 19 West Virginia
20 20 Maryland

Curt Warner was a Tailback for Pennsylvania State University, voted All-American in both the 1981 and 1982 seasons, as well as recipient of the 1982 Hall Award - which honors Penn State’s ‘outstanding senior player’. Following his career at Penn State, Curt played for the Seattle Seahawks - named as the 1983 AFC Rookie of the Year and winning AFC Offensive MVP honors in both 1983 and 1986. He finished his NFL career in 1990 with the Los Angeles Rams.

He went on to the NFL where he played for 8 seasons.

Here is what our friends at Wikipedia have to say about Curt Warner.


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1986

This painting honors the 1986 Pennsylvania State University football team and #31, worn by Shane Conlan. The 1986 team, coached by the legendary Joe Paterno and co-captained by Conlan, John Shaffer, Steve Smith and Bob White, went undefeated at 12-0.

Penn State was crowned National Champions in 1986. They capped off their championship season by beating Miami 14-10 in the Fiesta Bowl, where All-American Halfback D.J. Dozier would be named ‘Most Valuable Offensive Player’ and Shane Conlan would be named ‘Most Valuable Defensive Player’. Here is how the 1986 team ranked in the UP (United Press) and AP (Associated Press) polls for that season:

UP Rank AP Rank Team
1 1 Penn State
2 2 Miami
3 3 Oklahoma
5 4 Arizona State
4 5 Nebraska
8 6 Auburn
6 7 Ohio State
7 8 Michigan
9 9 Alabama
11 10 LSU
10 11 Arizona
13 12 Baylor
12 13 Texas A&M
14 14 UCLA
16 15 Arkansas
15 16 Iowa
19 17 Clemson
17 18 Washington
18 19 Boston College
20 Virginia Tech

Shane Conlan was an Outside Linebacker for Pennsylvania State University. In 1986, he was not only voted All-American (the sixth two-time All-American at Penn State), but was also a finalist for the Butkus Award - given to the nation’s premier Linebacker. Following his career at Penn State, Shane played for the Buffalo Bills, where in 1987, he would be named both the Defensive Rookie of the Year and the AFC Rookie of the Year. He also played for the Los Angeles and St. Louis Rams - during the franchise’s relocation, finishing his NFL career up in 1995.

He went on to the NFL where he played for 9 seasons.

Here is what our friends at Wikipedia have to say about Shane Conlan.


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1994

This painting honors the 1994 Pennsylvania State University football team and #12, worn by Kerry Collins. The 1994 team, coached by the legendary Joe Paterno and
co-captained by Collins, Brian Gelzheiser, Bucky Greeley, Willie Smith and Vin Stewart, went undefeated at 12-0.

The 1994 team played Oregon in the Rose Bowl and won 38-20, with All-American Running Back Ki-Jana Carter sharing ‘Most Valuable Player’ honors with Danny O’Neil from Oregon. Here is how the 1994 team ranked in the USA Today/CNN and AP (Associated Press) polls for that season:

USA Today / CNN Rank
AP Rank Team
1 1 Nebraska
2 2 Penn State
3 3 Colorado
5 4 Florida State
4 5 Alabama
6 6 Miami
7 7 Florida
*On Probation 8 Texas A&M
*On Probation 9 Auburn
8 10 Utah
11 11 Oregon
12 12 Michigan
15 13 USC
9 14 Ohio State
13 15 Virginia
14 16 Colorado State
17 17 North Carolina State
10 18 BYU
16 19 Kansas State
20 20 Arizona

Kerry Collins was a Quarterback for Pennsylvania State University. In the 1994 season, he was not only voted All-American, but also won the Maxwell Award - given to the outstanding player in collegiate football, as well as the O’Brien Award - which is awarded to the nation’s top Quarterback. He would also finish 4th in balloting that year for the Heisman Trophy - awarded to the outstanding intercollegiate football player in the United States. Following his career at Penn State, Kerry had a significant NFL career and played for a number of NFL teams, including the Carolina Panthers, New Orleans Saints, New York Giants, Oakland Raiders and Tennessee Titans.

A summary of his 16 season NFL career can be found here.

Here is what our friends at Wikipedia have to say about Kerry Collins.


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2005

This painting honors the 2005 Pennsylvania State University football team and #31, worn by Paul Posluszny. The 2005 team, coached by the legendary Joe Paterno (in his 40th season as the Nittany Lions’ head coach) went 11-1.

The 2005 team played Florida State in the FedEx Orange Bowl on January 3, 2006 - highlighting a meeting of major college’s two most victorious coaches: the Nittany Lions’ Joe Paterno and the Seminoles’ Bobby Bowden. An audience of 77,773 would witness Paterno putting an exclamation point on his 40th season - with Penn State winning the contest 26-23. Here is how the 2005 team ranked in the USA Today/ESPN and AP (Associated Press) polls for that season:

USA Today / ESPN Rank
AP Rank Team
1 1 Texas
2 2 USC
3 3 Penn State
4 4 Ohio State
6 5 West Virginia
5 6 LSU
7 7 Virginia Tech
8 8 Alabama
11 9 Notre Dame
10 10 Georgia
9 11 TCU
16 12 Florida
12 13 Oregon
14 14 Auburn
15 15 Wisconsin
13 16 UCLA
18 17 Miami
17 18 Boston College
20 19 Louisville
19 20 Texas Tech

Paul Posluszny was an Outside Linebacker for Pennsylvania State University. At the end of his college career, Paul’s multitude of achievements included:
· Penn State’s career tackle leader with 372
· 1st Nittany Lion two-time captain since 1968-69
· 1st Nittany Lion to lead the team in tackles 3 times & post 3 100+ tackle seasons
· 13th Nittany Lion and 1st Linebacker to be voted as a two-time All-American
· 2nd two-time winner of the Bednarik Award - as the nation’s top defensive player
· 2005 winner & 2006 runner-up of the Butkus Award - as the nation’s premier Linebacker
· two-time finalist for the Lombardi Award
· five-time Big Ten Defensive Player-of-the-Week - a Conference record

Following his college career at Penn State, Paul was drafted by the NFL’s Buffalo Bills. A summary of his NFL career can be found here.

Here is what our friends at Wikipedia have to say about Paul Posluszny.


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Celebrate the Ohio State University Buckeyes football uniform history by owning a piece of history:

If you love Ohio State and the history of Buckeyes football, you might really love to own an original piece of artwork celebrating the team's historic uniforms as seen in the poster at the top of this blog - you can actually own one of those original pieces of art! There are only 14 pieces of original art available for sale, and when these 14 are sold, that's it, they're all sold out.

These original watercolor paintings would make a great gift (birthday gift, anniversary gift, retirement gift, Christmas gift, etc.) for someone you love or even a great gift for yourself (one of these framed pieces would look fantastic in your home or office). Each piece can be bought one of three ways:
1. As unframed art that you could have framed or mounted yourself (the one on the left)
2. Framed in our "Classic" framed version (the middle version)
3. Framed in our "Deluxe" framed version (the version on the right)



If you would like more information about this great artwork including the three ways you could purchase each piece, please visit our Penn State YouTube video at www.youtube.com/watch?v=yhCmP0cINJY or go directly to the artwork website www.heritagesportsart.com/Penn-State-Nittany-Lions-c91/ where you can see and purchase the artwork.

And if someone you know loves the history of sports uniforms (but maybe another team) and loves great art, please let them know that we have over 1500 pieces of great original artwork for sale at www.heritagesportsart.com (all NFL teams, all MLB teams, all NHL teams, all CFL teams, select NCAA football teams) or check out each team's video at the Heritage Sports Art YouTube Channel www.youtube.com/user/ssillcox

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This blog was written by Scott Sillcox and was last updated August 21, 2010. I have tried to ensure the accuracy of the information, but I am human and can make mistakes. If you believe I have made a mistake, please let me know by email at ssillcox@rogers.com !

1 comment:

  1. I'd like to see a Texas A&M uniform history. The teams you have done look great!

    ReplyDelete