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Battle scores 28; Penn State hosts Illinois Wednesday.
A pair of healthy knees and a little luck will be on Highberger's wish list for 2009-10 as he returns from being sidelined in back-to-back seasons due to season-ending knee injuries. The outstanding student and former Pennsylvania All-State quarterback tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in June of 2007 and then tore the ACL in his right knee in December of 2008. The walk-on in his fourth year with the program has excelled in the classroom posting better than a 3.7 cumulative grade-point average in life sciences with plans to follow his father into dentistry.
2008-09 SEASON SOPHOMORE
After spending all of 2007-08 rehabbing an ACL tear in his left knee, Highberger finally returned to 100 percent and back to the practice floor...He saw action in four games before tearing the ACL in his right knee in early December...Earned Dean's List and Academic All-Big Ten honors posting a team-best 3.77 GPA in fall semester.
2007-08 SEASON FRESHMAN - MEDICAL-REDSHIRT
Took a medical redshirt due to a torn anterior cruciate ligament suffered over the summer. ..Did not practice with the team, but returned to 100 percent health during the team's 2008-09 summer sessions.
2006-07 SEASON FRESHMAN - REDSHIRT
A redshirt season...Joined the team as a walk-on...saw action in the first game of the season vs. Morehead State (11/10)...A good shooter and hard worker, he was a valuable member of the scout team.
A 2006 graduate of Blairsville High School, Highberger tallied 2,096 career points as a four-year letterman in basketball. He served as team captain as a junior and senior, helping to lead the squad to 29-2 and 28-3 records, respectively, averaging 20.2 points, 5.9 rebounds and 8.7 assists per game as a senior. The team won Heritage Conference and District 6 championships and reached the PIAA Class A state semi-finals in both 2005 and 2006. In his three years as a starter, the Bobcats posted a 79-10 mark.
Highberger also excelled on the football field he served as team captain as a senior and earned Pennsylvania Class A first-team All-state honors at quarterback. He is believed to be the first Pennsylvania athlete to throw for over 4,000 yards in football and score more than 2,000 points in basketball.
Strong in the classroom and active in the community, Highberger also lettered in track and graduated second in his class with a 4.0 grade-point average. He was a member of the National Honor Society (treasurer), Varsity Club, VIP Club, Junior Achievement Tutoring Program and Junior Achievement Company Program. He also volunteered to aid the community food bank and the American Red Cross blood drives. He was named to Who's Who Among American Students, Math Student of the Year, Distinguished Honor Roll, Heritage Math Competition and earned the DAR Good Citizen Award.
The son of Bruce and JoAnne Highberger...Has an older brother, Jarrod, who played football at Carnegie Mellon (2001-05) and an older sister, Laurel...Born July 16, 1987...Carried a 3.74 cumulative grade-point average through the spring semester of 2008.
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