Fans encouraged to be at stadium for Senior Day ceremony

Each one of the Nittany Lion football seniors who will be honored prior to Saturday's Nebraska game (3:30 p.m.) had the opportunity to walk away from Penn State at no cost.

But they didn't.

Kyle Baublitz, Kevin Blanchard, Alex Butterworth, Glenn Carson, Bryan Davie, Brandon Felder, Garry Gilliam, Adam Gress, Ty Howle, DaQuan Jones, Alex Kenney, Matt Lehman, Stephen Obeng-Agyapong, Eric Shrive, John Urschel, Malcolm Willis and Pat Zerbe stayed at Penn State because they felt like the people around them were too special to walk away from.

For that, the 2013 senior class will forever be remembered for their commitment to Penn State. And for that, fans are encouraged to be in the stadium to recognize the commitment of the special senior class.

"We can't wait to come into Beaver Stadium and hopefully it will be a great crowd," head coach Bill O'Brien said. "I would imagine that the Penn State fans will turn out in force to show their respect for this senior class that stuck with this university and stuck with this football program. I'm looking forward to the game on Saturday."

In addition to its success on the field, the 2013 senior class is a standout group in the classroom. By the end of the spring semester in 2014, the 17 seniors are projected to earn a combined 22 degrees. Additionally, the group is projected to have graduated from eight different Penn State colleges. Of the 17 players being recognized, 10 of them have a cumulative GPA higher than 3.0. Eight members of the senior group entered the 2013 with a Penn State degree already in hand.

"I think it's a special thing when you get introduced in front of the home crowd. It's a special stadium; I think these kids deserve a great crowd."

All 17 seniors are unique to one another, but they share the common bond of sticking together in the most difficult of times. When the NCAA sanctions were announced in July of 2012, this group of players had a choice to make. Outsiders thought it was a no-brainer and the members of the roster would walk out the door in favor of a fresh start at a program without sanctions.

But that's not in the DNA of anyone who will take part in the senior recognition ceremony. The 2013 seniors viewed the situation as an opportunity to be a part of something special. They stuck together and nothing tore this group apart.

"Resilient is a perfect word to describe us," linebacker Glenn Carson said. "We have been through so much together. We chose to be with each other over any school in the nation. Without a doubt, we will always stick together."

Fans are encouraged to be in their seats at least 30 minutes prior to kickoff on Saturday afternoon to be a part of a Senior Day ceremony that will honor a special group of student-athletes. The ceremony begins at 3:10 p.m.  

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Last Updated November 21, 2013