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Penn State alums playing on 21 NFL teams; 10 former Nittany Lions are on NFL coaching staffs
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Miles Dieffenbach enters 2014 as the most experienced member of the Nittany Lion offensive line and as an established team leader. A veteran with 23 career starts, second-most among 2014 returnees, Dieffenbach was instrumental in helping the Penn State offense rush for more than 2,000 yards and throw for more than 3,000 yards last year. Dieffenbach and junior tackle Donovan Smith will provide leadership for an offensive line unit that lost three starters and two key reserves from last year. Among the vocal and passionate leaders of the 2014 squad, Dieffenbach was injured during spring practice but is expected to be available during the season. The talented, tough and intense player has been a fixture at the left guard position since he grabbed the starting spot prior to the 2012 season-opener. Dieffenbach was instrumental in Penn State rushing for 250 yards or better four times last season. The hard-working and dedicated Dieffenbach was key in helping Penn State gain at least 350 yards in every game, scoring at least 23 points nine times. He helped Big Ten Freshman-of-the-Year Christian Hackenberg throw for 2,955 yards and 20 touchdowns, breaking 12 school freshman and all-time game and season passing records, and Zach Zwinak and Bill Belton combine to rush for 1,792 yards in 2013. Dieffenbach and the O-Line boosted Belton to the team's first 200-yard rushing effort since 2002 against Illinois (201 yards) and paved the way for 250 rushing yards and 240 passing yards in the win over the Illini. Recognized as one of the squad's funniest members, he also is a state champion table tennis player. The former Fox Chapel High School All-American was co-recipient of the team's Frank Patrick Total Commitment Award in 2013. Dieffenbach graduated with a degree in advertising/public relations in May with a cumulative 3.27 grade-point average. He is a two-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree. His father, George, compiled more than 500 combined career victories as head coach of the Pitt tennis teams, coaching the women's team for 31 years. Dieffenbach is among 10 returning Nittany Lions from metropolitan Pittsburgh.
2013 - Senior Season
Dieffenbach started all 12 games at left guard, giving him 23 career starts. He was instrumental in Penn State rushing for 250 yards or better four times during the season. He helped the Lions gain at least 350 yards in every game, scoring at least 23 points nine times. Dieffenbach helped Big Ten Freshman-of-the-Year Christian Hackenberg throw for 2,955 yards and 20 touchdowns, breaking 12 school freshman and all-time game and season passing records, and Zach Zwinak and Bill Belton combine to rush for 1,792 yards. Dieffenbach helped the Lions gain 574 yards of total offense against Eastern Michigan, their most since 2008 against Coastal Carolina (594 yards). He helped pave the way for a 287-yard rushing effort against Kent State, which was Penn State's most rushing yards in a game, at the time, since gaining 338 yards at Illinois in 2009. Dieffenbach was instrumental in protecting Hackenberg at Indiana, allowing him to complete 30 passes for 340 yards and three touchdowns. He helped clear the way for 390 yards of total offense and five touchdowns in the four-overtime win over Michigan, including the first two rushing touchdowns allowed all season by the Wolverines. Dieffenbach and the O-Line boosted Bill Belton to the team's first 200-yard rushing effort since 2002 against Illinois (201 yards) and paved the way for 250 rushing yards and 240 passing yards in the win over the Illini. He helped open running lanes for Zach Zwinak's 150 yards rushing at Minnesota and his 149 yards and three rushing touchdowns in the win over Purdue. Dieffenbach and the O-Line led the way for a season-high 289 rushing yards and 501 total yards, a season-high against a Big Ten foe, in the 45-21 win over the Boilermakers. He blocked for Zwinak's 149-yard rushing effort against Nebraska and helped open running lanes for Zwinak's 115 yards in the big win at No. 14 Wisconsin, marking the only 100-yard rusher allowed by the Badgers during the season. Dieffenbach and the O-Line also protected Hackenberg, who completed 21-of-30 passes for 339 yards -- including three completions of 50 yards or longer -- and four touchdowns with no interceptions in the big win over the Badgers. Penn State delivered the four longest plays from scrimmage at Wisconsin all season -- completions of 68, 52 and 59 yards and Zwinak's 61-yard run. Dieffenbach was named to the Academic All-Big Ten team for the second time. He was selected co-recipient of the team's Frank Patrick Total Commitment Award at the end of spring practice.
2012 - Junior Season
Dieffenbach solidified a starting assignment at left guard in training camp and started 11 games. He earned his first career start in the season-opener against Ohio, and appeared in all 12 contests. He was instrumental in helping the Nittany Lions lead the Big Ten in total offense (437.0 ypg) in conference games and ranking second in scoring offense (32.6 ppg) and second in pass offense (283.1 ypg) against Big Ten foes. Dieffenbach helped Penn State gain more than 500 yards of total offense three times in conference play, topped by 546 yards against Indiana, its highest total against a Big Ten foe since gaining 557 yards against Michigan State in 2008. He played a critical role in helping pave the way for 1,000-yard rusher Zach Zwinak and protecting quarterback Matt McGloin during his record-setting 2012 campaign. Dieffenbach was named to the Academic All-Big Ten team for the first time.
2011 - Sophomore Season
Dieffenbach's hard work and improvement did not result in any playing time, with four senior starters on the offensive line.
2010 - Freshman Season
Dieffenbach was a four-year starter under coach Bryan Deal at Fox Chapel Area High School. He was rated the nation's No. 1 prep center by ESPNU, No. 3 by Scout.com and No. 4 by Rivals.com. He was an Under Armour All-American and first-team all-state selection. He was named first-team All-WPIAL and all-conference. Dieffenbach did not allow a sack his junior or senior years, and tallied 45 tackles and five sacks. He was named to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Fab 22 and was on the winning squad in the 2010 Under Armour All-America game.
Full name is George Miles Dieffenbach. He is the son of George and Emma Dieffenbach. He has an older sister, Sarah, who played tennis at the University of Pittsburgh, where their father compiled more than 500 combined career victories as head coach of the Pitt men's and women's tennis teams, coaching the women's team from 1981-2012. His grandparents, Fred and Shirley Dieffenbach, are Penn State graduates, as well as an aunt and a great aunt. Dieffenbach enjoys fishing during his free time. Dieffenbach graduated with a degree in advertising/public relations in May 2014 and owned a 3.27 cumulative grade-point average through the 2014 spring semester. Born July 9, 1991 in Pittsburgh, Pa.
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