Penn State 2012 – A Year to Remember
10. Penn State Lady Lions Advance to Sweet 16
In March, the Penn State Lady Lions defeated LSU 90-80 to land a spot in the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA tournament. It was head coach Coquese Washington’s first time advancing to the third round of the tournament. It was a first time showing for the Lady Lions since 2004.
9. Penn State on the World Stage in the Olympics
The world watched in July and August as Penn State sent 19 athletes to the 2012 Olympic Games in London. Representing eight different countries, including the United States, Penn State male and female athletes competed in a number of different sports including gymnastics, track and field, rowing and volleyball. Not including the 1980 Moscow Games, Penn State has sent athletes to every Olympic Games since 1948.
8. The Penn State Women’s Soccer Team Makes NCAA Finals
For the first time in the history of the program, the Penn State women’s soccer team advanced to the College Cup final in 2012. Defeating Florida State 2-1, the Nittany Lions were finally able to break their streak of flopping during semifinal round play to play in the National title game.
7. Penn State Wrestling Wins 2nd National Championship
The Penn State wrestling team, led by Cael Sanderson, claimed their second straight NCAA Championship title in 2012. Senior Frank Molinaro, sophomore David Taylor and sophomore Ed Ruth all claimed individual titles during the competition. Penn State is expected to be equally competitive in 2013.
6. Penn State Praised for Academic and Athletic Excellence
Despite the ludicrous sanctions from Mark Emmert and the NCAA, Penn State student athletes continued to be praised for their academic and athletic excellence throughout the 2012 year. In December, the Penn State football program received special recognition for having a graduation rate 23 percent above the Division One average. “Success with Honor” is not just a motto at Penn State; it is a way of life.
5. Penn State Hockey Joins NCAA
2012 Was a very exciting year for Penn State hockey. The official groundbreaking ceremony for Pegula Ice Arena took place in April and the former Penn State Icers became a D1 hockey program in the fall under head coach Guy Gadowsky. Pegula Ice Arena is set to open in 2013.
4. ONE TEAM Becomes a Way of Life
The phrase, “One Team,” became not only a motto for the football program in 2012, but for Penn State University as a whole. After the NCAA sanctions were imposed in late July, it became crucial for everyone in the Penn State community to rally as one to support not only the football team but Penn State as a whole. Penn Staters across the nation were seen proudly wearing One Team hoodies, t-shirts and more. “One Team” will surely be a phrase that is heard for years to come.
3. The Beginning of the Bill O’Brien Era
In January 2012, Bill O’Brien, the offensive coordinator for the New England Patriots, became Penn State University’s 15th head football coach. O’Brien received an extremely warm welcome into the Penn State family and was praised for his dedication and commitment to the University and football program. Bill O’Brien had an extremely impressive 1st season as head football coach at Penn State with an 8-4 winning record. We “billieved” and Bill did not disappoint.
2. We Remember OUR Joe Paterno
In late January 2012, the Penn State community lost its longtime head football coach Joe Paterno to cancer. Penn Staters everywhere mourned the loss of a man that was Penn State and celebrated his life of dedication to the University. Never will his motto, “Success with Honor,” be forgotten and his memory will always live on in the hearts of Penn Staters.
"They ask me what I'd like written about me when I'm gone. I hope they write I made Penn State a better place, not just that I was a good football coach."
JoePa did indeed make Penn State a better place and for that, we will always be thankful.
1. Penn State Raises 10.6 Million for Pediatric Cancer- THON
The year 2012 marked the 40th anniversary for Penn State Dance Marathon and it was certainly a year to remember. THON, the largest student run philanthropy in the world, raised $10.69 million dollars in 2012 for pediatric cancer research and the Four Diamonds Fund at Hershey Medical Center. THON truly shows what Penn State is.
Have a very SAFE and HAPPY 2013 Penn Staters!