The All Time Penn State Offense
You hear Penn State and what do you think?
But there's no doubt that the Nittany Lions have had their fair share of offensive talent at every position over the years.
Here's my opinion on the best of the best:
QB: Kerry Collins, 1992-94
Kerry Collins had a stellar senior season in 1994.
He led what many still consider to be one of the top offenses of all time to a 12-0 record, a Big Ten Championship, and a Rose Bowl victory over Oregon.
Here are some notable PSU accomplishments for Collins:
Most passing yards (season): 2,679
Completion percentage (season): 66.7
Yards per attempt (season): 10.15
QB rating (season): 172.86
Collins had 16 different 200-yard passing games in his career, along with throwing a touchdown pass in 14 consecutive games to end his college career.
His NFL career has been up and down to say the least.
He's made appearances in Carolina, New Orleans, New York (with a Super Bowl appearance), Oakland, and now Tennessee, with varying degrees of success at each stop.
QB: John Shaffer, 1983-86
That game ball sums it up.
This pick isn't about stats, or even about who was the best pure quarterback.
John Shaffer threw more interceptions than touchdowns in his career.
His career completion percentage was under 50 percent and his best season consisted of 1,510 yards, nine TDs, and four INTs.
But throw all of that out the window because Shaffer was a winner, plain and simple.
He was 66-1 as a starter from seventh grade up through his senior year at Penn State.
He was the rare QB that specialized in winning.
Not a bad backup, if you ask me.
RB: John Cappelletti, 1972-73
Penn State's only Heisman Trophy winner is a no-brainer for this list.
Cappelletti is another guy who didn't blow you away with stats.
But he was the perfect RB for Joe Paterno — tough, fast, and had a nose for the end zone.
He was also a great man off the field. If you've never heard the story of John and his little brother Joey, who suffered from leukemia, read it now.
RB: Curt Warner, 1979-82
Steady, consistent, and clutch.
That was Curt Warner, the best four-year player Penn State has ever seen.
He is PSU's leading career rusher with 3,398 yards to go along with 24 rushing touchdowns.
Penn State won two Fiesta Bowls during his tenure—one against USC and another versus Ohio State.
In his senior year, Warner paced the Nittany Lions with two touchdowns against Georgia in the Sugar Bowl, beating the Bulldogs for Penn State's first National Championship.
RB: Ki-Jana Carter, 1992-94
Ki-Jana Carter was the featured back on the best Penn State offense the school has ever seen.
He scored 38 rushing touchdowns in his career and had an impressive 7.2 yards per carry average.
He also has the distinct honor of being my first favorite player.
It's true that opposing defenses had a lot to concentrate on when playing Penn State, but Carter dominated, regardless of whether the opponents tried to stop him or Kerry Collins.
Carter's style can be summed up by the first play from the scrimmage in the 1995 Rose Bowl vs. Oregon — an 83-yard punishing run for a touchdown.
He scored three touchdowns on that day, securing what should have been Penn State's third National Championship.
WR: Bobby Engram, 1991, 1993-95
Bobby Engram was not a big guy, but he had other great attributes.
He stood 5'10" and weighed 190 pounds, but was lightning-fast and had the softest hands of any Penn State receiver.
He's also the third player on this list from that '94 team.
Things started off rocky for Engram at PSU.
He immediately entered Joe Paterno's doghouse after being convicted of theft, and was kicked off the team for the 1992 season.
However, after paying his dues to society and to Joe, he was allowed back on the team. After that setback, he went on to have the most productive receiving career in Nittany Lions history: 167 receptions, 3,026 yards, 31 TDs, and an 18.1 YPC average for his career, winning the first-ever Biletnikoff award in 1994.
WR: O.J. McDuffie, 1988-92
O.J. McDuffie had a somewhat quiet career at Penn State until his senior year, when he exploded for 63 receptions, 977 yards, and nine touchdowns, garnering All-American honors.
He had, perhaps, the most successful pro career of any PSU receiver, playing nine productive years with Dan Marino and the Miami Dolphins from 1993-2001.
WR: Deon Butler, 2005-08
Deon Butler finished his career as the all-time receptions leader at Penn State with 179.
He's second all-time in receiving yards with 2,771 and third all-time in receiving touchdowns with 22.
Along with Derrick Williams, he led the Penn State offense (and team) to 41 wins and two Big Ten Championships during his career.
TE: Ted Kwalick, 1966-68
Most PSU fans would pick Kyle Brady as the No. 1 TE, but Ted Kwalick is a no-brainer pick.
He played a year fewer than Brady during a time that Penn State did not pass much, especially compared to the 1994 team.
Despite that, Kwalick holds Penn State's career receiving records in receptions, yards, and TDs by a tight end.
He finished his career with 86 receptions, 1,343 yards, and 10 scores.
LT: Levi Brown, 2002-06
Originally listed as a defensive lineman, Levi Brown red-shirted his freshman season in 2002.
In 2003 he started all 12 games at left tackle and played 841 snaps.
In 2004, as a sophomore, Brown started 10 games, including one game at right tackle against Iowa, and played 630 snaps.
As a junior in 2005, Brown started every game at left tackle and played 869 snaps. He was named an Associated Press and Sports Illustrated second-team All-American, as well as a first-team All-Big Ten selection.
In his final season, he anchored a young offensive line, while still earning All-American accolades.
LG: Jeff Hartings, 1992-95
Jeff Hartings was an All-American guard in 1994 and 1995, and anchored the impressive O-line of PSU's 1994 offense.
He was drafted by the Detroit Lions, but ended up flourishing with the Pittsburgh Steelers after switching to center.
C: Bucky Greeley, 1991-94
It's hard finding pictures of offensive linemen, OK?
Bucky Greeley was yet another piece of the vaunted '94 offense and, along with Hartings, dominated opposing defensive lines.
He played one year of professional football with the Carolina Panthers.
RG: Steve Wisniewski, 1985-88
Steve Wisniewski was a key contributor to the 1986 National Championship team and was an All-American in 1987 and 1988.
He had the best career in the NFL for a Penn State offensive lineman, playing 12 years with the Raiders, making eight Pro Bowls, and being named to the All-Decade team in the '90s.
RT: Keith Dorney, 1975-78
Keith Dorney was a "take no prisoners" tackle that earned All-American and Academic All-American honors throughout his Penn State career.
He played 13 years with the Detroit Lions, making the Pro Bowl once.