It’s Linebacker U. You could make an argument for virtually any linebacker that’s come through Penn State’s football program to be placed on the all-time defensive team.
I’ve narrowed it down to what I believe are the stand-out guys that have made the traditional Nittany Lion defense such a feared and respected part of college football.
Despite Penn State’s current depth at linebacker and the fact that the nation is continuing its era of the spread offense, I'll stick with the traditional four-three defense.
For PennState’s All-Time Offensive Team, read the article here:
DL Courtney Brown – In 1999, Brown was a consensus first-team All-American and was named to the All-Big Ten first-team.
He earned the defensive player of the year award and defensive linemen of the year award in his senior year, then finished his college career with a NCAA record-breaking 33 sacks and 70 tackles for loss.
DL Mike Reid – He was a unanimous All-American and won the 1969 Outland Trophy and Maxwell Award. He also finished fifth on the Heisman ballot.
DL Bruce Clark – Two-year All-American and first-ever Lombardi Award recipient as a junior in 1978.
DL Aaron Maybin – Simply dominant. He chose not to stay for his junior year, but he was one of the best anyway.
In 2007 he was named to the Freshman All-Big Ten team, then All-American and All-Big Ten selection in 2008. He remains close with fellow great LaVar Arrington, who is now Maybin’s manager.
LB LaVar Arrington – The “LaVar Leap.” Enough said. I don’t think a play has ever pumped me up more.
LB Dan Connor – He has 419 career tackles at a school known for defensive dominance. That’s ridiculous.
LB Shane Conlan – He led the defense to both of the program’s national championships in its history.
He had two interceptions in the 1987 Fiesta Bowl against Miami, one of which led to DJ Dozier’s game-winning touchdown.
DB Anthony Scirrotto – Two-time All-Big Ten selection and led the Lions in interceptions for two consecutive years.
He made big plays as a safety, punt returner and punt blocker, while leading the team playing in 2,030 plays in two years.
DB Neal Smith – Neal’s 19 interceptions are a PennState career
record, and his 10 picks during his All-America 1969 season are a single-season school mark.
DB Mark Robinson – In 1982, Robinson racked up 70 tackles and four interceptions, and was an All-American.
Then he added another nine tackles and two picks in the Nittany Lions' 1982 National Championship.
DB Duffy Cobbs – One of the unsung heroes of the 1987 Fiesta Bowl Championship where he had one of Vinny Testaverde’s five interceptions on the night.
He was a part of both of PennState’s national championship seasons.
What do you think?