Creamery serves up new flavor in honor of volleyball coach Russ Rose

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Russ Rose, Penn State women's volleyball head coach, has had unprecedented success over a 35-year career in Happy Valley, including five national championships in the last seven years. But perhaps none of his victories has tasted as sweet as the honor he received this week.

Penn State's renowned Berkey Creamery today (May 22) unveiled a new ice cream flavor named for the legendary mentor: Russ "Digs" Roseberry. The variety is made with black raspberry puree, whole strawberries, strawberry sauce, red raspberry sauce and pure Wilbur's chocolate in a vanilla base.

"Coach Rose likes fruit-flavored ice cream," said Tom Palchak, manager of the creamery, "and his wife, Lori, loves chocolate. She was instrumental in helping to develop this new flavor, so we're pleased we were able to blend the fruits and chocolate in a way that we think the Roses, and the public, will love."

Palchak noted that the new flavor is meant to recognize not just Penn State's success on the court, but the way in which Rose has built his program.

"He's won conference and national championships with true scholar-athletes," he said. "His players have been named Academic All-Big Ten 150 times, and 16 have been named Academic All-Americans, with four of those being named Academic All-American of the Year. They are well-rounded individuals who reflect their coach in their quest for excellence."

Developing a new flavor in Rose's honor first was discussed a few years ago, according to Palchak, but the coach -- who typically prefers not to focus on personal accolades -- politely declined. After he guided Penn State to its sixth NCAA championship last fall, he was approached again, this time accepting the recognition.

In the following months, Palchak hosted the Roses at the creamery so they could provide input and sample flavor combinations that might be appropriate.

"There are few people at this University who have had a flavor named after them, and when I was first asked, I wasn't quite sure about the idea," Rose said. "But after considering it, Lori and I decided to get involved and work with the creamery to perfect the flavor. I am honored to have been approached by the University, and I hope it's going to be a popular flavor."

The new flavor is the first added in more than 20 years to the creamery's lineup of "hall of fame" permanent flavors, which pay tribute to Penn State people and institutions that have had significant impact on the University and wider community:

-- Cherry Quist, a creamy black cherry and vanilla ice cream, is named for John Almquist, professor emeritus of dairy science and the 1981 winner of the Wolf Prize, the highest award in the agricultural sciences.

-- Keeney Beany, a double-chocolate ice cream with chocolate chunks, pays tribute to Philip Keeney, professor emeritus of food science and nationally recognized authority on ice cream and chocolate technology.

-- Peachy Paterno, the winning name selected from a Penn State Food Science Club ice cream naming contest in 1987, honors former football coach Joe Paterno's academic contributions to the University.

-- WPSU Coffee Break is named for Penn State's award-winning public broadcasting television station.

-- Palmer Mousseum w/Almonds is named in recognition of Penn State's art museum, a popular place to visit within walking distance of the creamery.

-- Alumni Swirl is named in honor of the thousands of Alumni who make a point of visiting the creamery every time they visit Penn State. It is Blue and White, of course.

Housed in the College of Agricultural Sciences, the creamery's mission is to support the teaching, research and outreach programs of the Department of Food Science, to provide quality dairy products to the students in on-campus housing and to maintain an economically viable retail outlet for dairy products to the University community. It is the largest university creamery in the nation.

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Last Updated May 22, 2014