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Aug. 24, 2011
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa.; - Penn State linebacker Nate Stupar (State College) has been selected as one of the candidates for the prestigious Lowe's Senior CLASS Award for the 2011 college football season.
The 30 Football Bowl Subdivision student-athletes excel on and off the field. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I FBS senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
Penn State All-America guard Stefen Wisniewski was among the 10 finalists for the 2010 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award.
The 30 candidates will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the season, and those 10 names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one finalist who best exemplifies excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition.
Stupar is among eight Big Ten football student-athletes who are Lowe's Senior CLASS Award candidates, the highest total of any conference (four is next highest).
Stupar has played in all 39 games in his career on defense and special teams. Last year, he earned seven starts and was third on the team with 73 tackles, recording 6.5 tackles for loss (minus-28), with two sacks, one interception, a forced fumble and four pass break-ups. Stupar registered a team and season-high 10 tackles in last season's win over Indiana at FedEx Field. He also made a game-high tying 10 hits against No.10 Michigan State and forced a fumble.
During the 2009 season, the former State College Area High School first-team all-state selection made a career-high 12 hits, with a sack, vs. Akron.
A Dean's List student, Stupar graduated in May with a 3.64 cumulative grade point average, earning a degree in film-video. He earned a 3.95 GPA during the 2011 spring semester and should be a strong candidate for CoSIDA Academic All-America recognition this fall. Stupar is a three-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree.
Among Stupar's community service activities are: THON Make-A-Wish, Special Olympics Pennsylvania State Summer Games, Penn State Uplifting Athletes Life For Life and Student-Athlete Advisory Board (SAAB) Reading program.
Tickets are available for five games during the Nittany Lions' blockbuster home schedule this fall. Penn State football tickets can be purchased at www.GoPSUsports.com/tickets or by calling 1-814-865-5555 weekdays from 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
The Nittany Lions are 58-19 (75.3) overall since the start of the 2005 season to rank in the top 10 percent nationally in winning percentage. Over the past six years, Penn State has won two Big Ten Championships, won four bowl games and played in five New Year's or Bowl Championship Series (BCS) games, the nation's third-highest total.
The No. 25 Nittany Lions return 43 letterwinners and 15 starters, as well as 16 players that have starting experience. Penn State opens its 125th season Sept. 3 vs. Indiana State at 12:00 p.m. on the Big Ten Network, Penn State Sports Network and www.GoPSUsports.com. No. 2 Alabama visits Beaver Stadium on Sept. 10 for a 3:30 p.m. kick and all Penn State fans are encouraged to wear white.
Penn State Football Eve launches the season on Friday, Sept. 2 at 7:30 p.m. in Beaver Stadium. The event and parking are free.