Penn State Football logoPenn State Football

Penn State Football: Breaking Down Nittany Lions' Senior Day Helmets

Photo courtesy of Greg Campbell's Instagram (sid_greg)
Photo courtesy of Greg Campbell's Instagram (sid_greg)
Ben ChodosCorrespondent IINovember 24, 2012

Penn State has made an important tweak to its uniforms for senior day, and this change will help bring an historic season to a fitting end.

No. 42 will appear on the left side of every helmet in honor of senior leader Michael Mauti. Tony Mancuso, Penn State’s assistant director of athletic communications, shared a photo of the helmet via Twitter, and Jeff Nelson, the school’s assistant athletic director, put the gesture in historical context:

PIC: To honor of Michael Mauti, #PennState will have 42 on the left side of its helmets

— Tony Mancuso (@GoPSUTony) November 24, 2012

#PennState last wore numbers on side of helmet in 1974. Win over Baylor in 1975 Cotton Bowl last game prior to today

— Jeff Nelson (@GoPSUJeff) November 24, 2012

The senior linebacker suffered a left knee injury last week against Indiana that will keep him out of the Nittany Lions’ season finale against Wisconsin. 

The linebacker was immensely valuable to the Nittany Lions both on and off the field. He racked up 95 tackles while also forcing three fumbles and intercepting three passes.

But he also provided incredible leadership to a team that could have easily devolved into turmoil without a presence like him.

Penn State faced intense scrutiny and uncertainty heading into this season. This was the first time since 1965 that Joe Paterno did not lead the team, and the Nittany Lions were also dealing with all the effects of the harsh sanctions that were place on the program in response to the Jerry Sandusky scandal.

With several talented players opting to transfer out of Happy Valley and no hope for a bowl birth or a conference championship, new coach Bill O’Brien preached togetherness, and Mauti loudly echoed that message.

He is a vital reason that the Nittany Lions have won seven games this season, and it is truly a shame that he has to finish his career on the sidelines. While this must be hugely disappointing for him, his number on the left side of Penn State's helmets is an excellent show of appreciation.

His contribution to the Penn State football program has been invaluable, and this is a truly classy gesture by the team.

Where can I comment?

Stay on your game

Latest news, insights, and forecasts on your teams across leagues.

Choose Teams
Get it on the App StoreGet it on Google Play

Real-time news for your teams right on your mobile device.

Copyright © 2017 Bleacher Report, Inc. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. All Rights Reserved. is part of Bleacher Report – Turner Sports Network, part of the Turner Sports and Entertainment Network. Certain photos copyright © 2017 Getty Images. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of Getty Images is strictly prohibited. AdChoices