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May 23, 2010
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa., May 23, 2010 - Penn State standouts Evan Royster (Fairfax, Va.) and Stefen Wisniewski (Bridgeville) has been selected pre-season All-Americans by Phil Steele's College Football Preview.
A senior guard, Wisniewski was selected a first team All-American, joining his first team notice from Lindy's Football Preview earlier this month. A senior tailback, Royster was named a third team All-American by Phil Steele's
Wisniewski earned third team All-America and first team All-Big Ten accolades in 2009, starting all 13 games at center for the Nittany Lions. He moved back to guard during spring practice, where he started 12 games in 2008, helping Penn State win the Big Ten Championship and a berth in the Rose Bowl.
A starter in 25 of 26 games the past two seasons, Wisniewski is on the preliminary Watch List for the 41st Rotary Lombardi Award. He saw action on 905 snaps, the third-highest total on the team in 2009. Wisniewski and the O-Line played a huge role in Penn State ranking No. 2 in the Big Ten in total offense at 406.9 ypg. The Nittany Lions were the only Big Ten team ranked in the top five of the conference's four primary offensive statistical categories in 2009.
Behind the protection of Wisniewski and his linemates, Daryll Clark finished No. 2 in the Big Ten in passing efficiency and threw a school season-record 24 touchdown passes last year. Penn State was third in the Big Ten in fewest sacks allowed and eclipsed 500 yards of total offense on four occasions, including 512 in the regular-season finale at Michigan State.
A secondary education major in the Schreyer Honors College, Wisniewski has spent this year student teaching 10th-grade English at State College Area High School. He was selected a 2009 first-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American®, as he added to his 2008 second-team honor. Owner of a superlative 3.90 grade-point average, the squad's highest mark, Wisniewski will have an opportunity in 2010 to become Penn State's first three-time Academic All-American®. A U.S. Army All-American at Pittsburgh Central Catholic High School, he earned a perfect 4.0 GPA last fall.
Royster has been one of the nation's premier tailbacks the past two seasons, rushing for 1,169 yards in 2009 to earn first team All-Big Ten accolades. In 2008, he was among 10 semifinalists for the Doak Walker Award and earned second team all-conference accolades after gaining 1,236 yards and scoring 12 touchdowns.
During the 2009 season, Royster started all 13 games and was instrumental in Penn State earning its second consecutive 11-2 mark. He gained 1,169 yards, second-highest in the Big Ten, on 205 carries and scored six touchdowns. His 5.7 average was best among the Big Ten rushers with at least 110 carries. Royster was sixth on the team with 16 receptions for 187 yards, scoring twice. He led the team with 1,364 all-purpose yards (104.9 ypg), ranking No. 3 in the conference through the regular season.
Royster delivered six 100-yard rushing games last season, led by 137 yards in the 20-0 win over Minnesota. He has 12 century-busting games in his career and the Nittany Lions are 12-0 when he breaks 100 yards.
Royster will enter this season with 2,918 career rushing yards, good for No. 8 in the Penn State record books. He needs 481 yards to break Curt Warner's school record of 3,398 yards, set during the 1979-82 campaigns. Royster needs just 82 yards to become the sixth Nittany Lion to eclipse 3,000 yards on the ground.
The former Westfield High School All-Met selection graduated earlier this month in Management Information Systems.
Phil Steele's College Football Preview will be available on newsstands June 8.
Penn State is 51-13 (79.7) since the start of the 2005 season, tied for the nation's No. 7 winning percentage over that span. The Nittany Lions earned their second consecutive 11-2 record last season, capped by a win over LSU in the Capital One Bowl, Penn State's fourth bowl victory in the past five seasons. Penn State posted its 23rd final Top 10 ranking under Hall of Fame Coach Joe Paterno.
The Nittany Lions return 37 letterwinners for the 2010 season, including 13 starters (7 offense, 5 defense, 1 specialist), as well as 11 players that have starting experience. Penn State opens the season Sept. 4 vs. Youngstown State in Beaver Stadium and visits 2009 national champion Alabama on Sept. 11.