UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa.; November 5, 2018 – Penn State Intercollegiate Athletics will highlight the varied and numerous achievements by its 800 student-athletes during the third annual STATE of Excellence Week, set for November 6-10.

The Nittany Lions will celebrate student-athlete success through events and social media. The week will culminate with 2017-18 team and individual champions being recognized at the Wisconsin football game in Beaver Stadium on November 10, which will kick at noon.

Penn State has one of the nation’s most comprehensive and successful athletic programs, with approximately 800 student-athletes across 31 programs (16 men’s and 15 women’s). Penn State student-athletes have an NCAA Graduation Success Rate of 90 percent and have earned 201 CoSIDA Academic All-America selections, the fourth-highest total among Division I programs.

The Nittany Lions have won 78 team national championships and 107 Big Ten Conference crowns all-time, including the women’s soccer team capturing its 19th Big Ten title this fall. Penn State is one of only nine programs nationwide to have finished in the Top 25 in all 25 Learfield Directors’ Cup final standings, with 13 Top 10 finishes and 19 Top 15 placements.

STATE of Excellence Week; November 6-10

Tuesday, November 6 – Champions Dinner
National and conference championship teams and individuals from 2017-18 will be honored at a dinner hosted by Director of Athletics Sandy Barbour.

Wednesday, November 7 – Academics
Penn State student-athletes’ commitment to academic excellence and the support provided by
The Morgan Academic Center and ICA staff, faculty, fans and donors will be recognized. The
Athletics staff will gather for a celebration of team and student-athlete accomplishments and
recognition in the Bryce Jordan Center.

The 2017-18 academic year again saw several school overall and semester academic records
broken or tied by Penn State student-athletes, including:

–  Student-athlete combined 3.15 GPA during the spring 2018 semester;
– 66 percent of student-athletes with a 3.0 GPA or higher during the 2018 spring semester (ties 2017 spring);
– 26 teams with a combined 3.0 team GPA in 2017 fall and 2018 spring semesters;
– 360 Academic All-Big Ten honorees in 2017-18 (3.0 GPA);

Penn State Coaches’ Radio Show at Primanti Brothers; downtown State College
Cael Sanderson‘s Coaches Show – Wednesday, November 7 – 6:05 p.m.

James Franklin‘s Coaches Show – Thursday, November 8 – 6:05 p.m.

  • Guest: Head Coach Pat Chambers (MBB)

Thursday, November 8 – Competition
STATE of Excellence Week activities will pause for competition on Nov. 8 when the Lady Lion Basketball team opens its season, hosting Providence at 7 p.m. in the Bryce Jordan Center.

Friday, November 9 – Competition
STATE of Excellence Week activities pause for competition on Nov. 9 as four Penn State teams
are home, including the season opener for the Nittany Lion Basketball team, who will raise the
2018 NIT Championship banner:

12 p.m. – Men’s & Women’s Cross Country host NCAA Mid-Atlantic Championship; Penn State
Golf Courses;
7 p.m. – Men’s Hockey vs. Robert Morris;
7:30 p.m. – Men’s Basketball vs. North Florida

Saturday, November 10 – Recognition
The Nittany Lion football team hosts Wisconsin in the THON game and several Nittany
Lion teams and national champion student-athletes will be recognized:

  • Wrestling – National Champions (7th NCAA title in 8 years)
  • Men’s Basketball – NIT Champions (2nd NIT title)
  • Men’s Gymnastics – Stephen Nedoroscik
  • Track & Field – Isaiah Harris & David Lucas
  • World Champion – Wrestling – David Taylor

At halftime, more than 200 of the students who earned a 3.0 grade-point average during the 2017-18 academic year will be recognized on the field. A school record 520 student-athletes posted at least a 3.0 GPA during the 2017 fall semester and 487 Nittany Lion students earned at least a 3.0 GPA during the 2018 spring semester.

In addition, on Sunday, Nov. 11, the Penn State wrestling team opens its season vs. Kent State at 2 p.m. and will raise its seventh NCAA Championship banner in the past eight years.

Penn State has won 20 NCAA Championships since January 2007, a total that is tied for No. 3 nationally and leads all Big Ten Conference institutions.


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