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Jan. 30, 2014
Fans are invited to hear from head football coach James Franklin, Arrington and Mauti, as they discuss the Nittany Lions' Class of 2014 signees on Wednesday, Feb. 5 - National Letter of Intent Day.
"Penn State Football - The Signature Event" will be held in the Bryce Jordan Center. The doors will open at 5 p.m. for general admission seating, with the program starting at 6 p.m. Tickets for the event are $5.00 and Penn State students will be admitted for free with a valid Penn State ID at Gate A. The Jordan Center concession stands will be open before and during the event. Parking will be free in the lots west of Beaver Stadium and east of the Jordan Center.
General admission tickets for the "The Signature Event" can be purchased in advance online at www.gopsusports.com/signingday. Follow the link to the Penn State Account Manager, please login if you are a returning ticket purchaser or create a new account to conveniently purchase and print your event tickets at home. Tickets also are available in advance weekdays from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. by calling 1-800-NITTANY or at the Bryce Jordan Center Ticket Office.
Arrington was a first-team All-American at Penn State in 1998 and '99 and finished ninth in balloting for the 1999 Heisman Trophy before embarking on an All-Pro career in the National Football League. In 1999, he became Penn State's first Butkus Award recipient and won the Maxwell Football Club's Chuck Bednarik Award as the country's top defensive player. A 1999 consensus first-team All-American, Arrington also was a finalist for the 1999 Bronko Nagurski Trophy and Rotary Lombardi Award.
A prep All-American at Pittsburgh's North Hills High School, Arrington was the first sophomore to be selected Big Ten Defensive Player-of-the-Year, in 1998. In 1999, he made 72 tackles, with 20 tackles for loss, nine sacks, one interception, one forced fumble, two fumble recoveries (one touchdown) and two blocked kicks. His leaping tackle over the offensive line of an Illinois runner, the "LaVar Leap," was selected the 1998 Compaq National Defensive Play-of-the-Year.
Arrington was selected by the Washington Redskins, as the second overall pick of the 2000 NFL Draft and played with the Redskins (2000-05) and the New York Giants (2006), earning Pro Bowl honors in 2001, `02 and `03. He made 288 solo tackles, recorded 23.5 sacks and forced 10 fumbles during his NFL career.
Arrington hosts the "LaVar and Dukes" radio program weekdays from 2-6 p.m. on 106.7 The Fan in Washington, D.C. and also regularly appears on NFL Network's "NFL AM" program.
From Mandeville, La., Mauti recently completed his rookie season with the NFL's Minnesota Vikings. A 2012 Penn State co-captain, passionate and inspirational leader, Mauti was the Butkus-Fitzgerald Linebacker of the Year during his senior season. Mauti was a 2012 first-team All-American, becoming LinebackerU's eighth first-team selection since 1999 and 19th all-time. A semifinalist for the 2012 Butkus Award, he earned first-team All-Big Ten honors by the coaches, media, BTN.com and ESPN.com, was selected the Nittany Lions' 2012 Outstanding Senior Player. Mauti was a two-time Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week in 2012 (three career). During his senior season, Mauti was the only Big Ten player ranked in the top 10 in the conference in tackles (6th, 95), interceptions (7th, 3) and forced fumbles (3rd, 3). He also led the Big Ten in interception return yards (125). Mauti recorded 4.0 TFL, 2.5 sacks (minus-25), a team-high three interceptions, three forced fumbles, one fumble recovery and two pass break-ups. The former Mandeville High School All-American made 209 career tackles, recording 13.5 tackles for losses, with four interceptions, four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.
Franklin was named the Nittany Lions' 16th head football coach on Jan. 11. A product of Langhorne, Pa., Franklin led Vanderbilt University to unprecedented success during his three years as head coach, including a pair of nine win seasons, bowl victories the past two years and back-to-back Top 25 finishes for the first time in school history.
Franklin will introduce the members of his coaching staff and speak about each of member of Penn State's Class of 2014, including the five student-athletes who enrolled in classes earlier this month. Video highlights and biographical information on each signee will be shown on the Jordan Center videoboards.
High school players who plan to enroll in a college or university this summer or fall can sign a National Letter of Intent for the first time on Feb. 5.
In addition to Arrington and Mauti, current Penn State football student-athletes are expected to speak at the event. The Penn State band and cheerleaders also will participate in the rally to celebrate the first Penn State recruiting class signed by Franklin and his staff.
Immediately after the rally, the No. 12 Penn State men's volleyball team hosts No. 15 Ohio State at 7:15 p.m. in Rec Hall.
Season ticket renewals are underway online at www.GoPSUsports.com/AccountManager and Nittany Lion Club members are reminded that the deadline for donations is Saturday, February 1. There again was no increase in season tickets prices for Penn State football for the 2014 season. New season tickets are available by calling 1-800-NITTANY, weekdays from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Coach Franklin and the Nittany Lions open the season on Aug. 30 vs. UCF in Dublin, Ireland at the Croke Park Classic. Penn State returns 15 starters (7 offense, 7 defense, 1 specialist) and will host Rose Bowl Champion Michigan State (Nov. 29), Ohio State (Oct. 25), Northwestern (Sept. 27-Homecoming) and Maryland (Nov. 1) during its 2014 Big Ten home schedule. The Nittany Lions will play a trio of 2013 Top 10 teams this fall.