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UNIVERSITY PARK, PA. - Paul Hornung Award winner and Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year Saquon Barkley (Coplay, Pa.) and All-Big Ten honorees safety Marcus Allen (Upper Marlboro, Md) and quarterback Trace McSorley (Ashburn, Va.) were among the award winners at State College Quarterback Club's annual banquet honoring the Penn State football team.
Winner of the Big Ten's Offensive Player of the Year, Running Back of the Year, Kick Return Specialist of the Year and Silver Football awards, Barkley was selected the Nittany Lions' Most Valuable Player. A first-team All-Big Ten honoree, Allen was honored as the Most Valuable Defensive Player, while the Nittany Lions' record-setting quarterback and All-Big Ten second team honoree McSorley was selected Penn State's Most Valuable Offensive Player.
A crowd of nearly 700 filled the main ballroom at the Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel to honor 23 seniors and the 2017 squad.
In addition to the player awards (see below), former Nittany Lion safety Mark Robinson was presented the Alumni Athlete Award. He was a first-team All-American safety in 1982. During his junior season, the Nittany Lions won the National Championship, defeating Georgia, 27-23, in the Sugar Bowl. He had 11 tackles and two interceptions and was named the defensive player of the game. After earning his degree in finance from Penn State, Robinson played eight seasons in the NFL, with the Kansas City Chiefs (1984-87) and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1988-91). While playing for the Chiefs, he earned his MBA at Rockhurst College and discovered his passion for working with kids. Robinson and his wife, Melinda, run the Safety Harbor Montessori Academy. They have three daughters: Jordan, Jasmine and Haley.
A complete listing of all the award winners at Sunday's State College Quarterback Club banquet:
- Lions' Pride Outstanding Senior Player Award (greatest career contribution to Penn State Football) -- linebacker Jason Cabinda and wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton
- Most Valuable Player -- running back Saquon Barkley
- Most Valuable Offensive Player -- quarterback Trace McSorley
- Most Valuable Defensive Player -- safety Marcus Allen
- Captain's Award -- safety Marcus Allen, running back Saquon Barkley, linebacker Jason Cabinda, kicker Tyler Davis, cornerback Grant Haley, wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton, quarterback Trace McSorley, safety Nick Scott
- Ridge Riley Award (senior for "sportsmanship, scholarship, leadership and friendship") -- safety Troy Apke, offensive lineman Andrew Nelson
- Dick Maginnis Memorial Award (outstanding offensive lineman) -- offensive lineman Brendan Mahon
- Bob Mitinger Memorial Award (senior who exhibits courage, character and social responsibility) -- running back Josh McPhearson, cornerback Grant Haley, defensive end Torrence Brown
- Reid-Robinson Award (outstanding defensive lineman). Named in honor of two of Penn State's most acclaimed defensive linemen, Dave Robinson and Mike Reid -- defensive tackle Parker Cothren
- John Bruno Memorial Award (outstanding member of special teams) -- punter Blake Gillikin
- Tim Shaw Thrive Award. Awardedto the student-athlete who has overcome adversities and been an inspiration to his fellow teammates -- defensive tackle Tyrell Chavis
- Iron Lion Award (strength and conditioning). Awarded to the player who demonstrates the cornerstone of the Penn State Football strength and conditioning program -- intensity and consistency -- wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton
- Outstanding Run-on Award (Run-on player who exemplifies total commitment, loyalty, hard work and courage) -- tight end Tom Pancoast, quarterback Billy Fessler
- Quarterback Club Special Awards -- wide receiver Saeed Blacknall, cornerback Christian Campbell, defensive tackle Curtis Cothran, tight end Mike Gesicki, kicker Tyler Davis
- Football Letterman's Club Joe and Sue Paterno Post-Graduate Scholarship ($5,000 Scholarship to a senior to provide recognition and financial assistance for graduate school) -- linebacker Brandon Smith
- The Nittany Lion Club Academic Achievement Award (senior with highest GPA) -- wide receiver Cody Hodgens
- Highest Academic Average -- punter Blake Gillikin
- Public Service Award -- offensive lineman Charlie Shuman
- Scout Team Special Teams Player of the Year -- safety Jonathan Sutherland
- Scout Team Defensive Player of the Year -- cornerback Desi Davis, linebacker Jason Vranic
- Scout Team Offensive Player of the Year -- running back Josh McPhearson, offensive lineman Des Holmes
- Football Support Staff Member of the Year -- Superman Berrow
- Head Coach Special Recognition Award -- Leanne Louden
The ninth-ranked Nittany Lions win face No. 11 Washington in the Playstation Fiesta Bowl Saturday, Dec. 30 at 4 p.m. (ET) in Glendale, Arizona. Fans can visit GoPSUsports.com/bowlcentral for more information.
Penn State season ticket renewals and Nittany Lion Club membership renewals also are underway for the 2018 Penn State Football season presented by PSECU. The ticket invoice and Nittany Lion Club renewal deadline is Feb. 1, 2018. For information on joining the Nittany Lion Club and purchasing new 2018 season tickets, as well as club seating in Beaver Stadium, fans can visit www.PSUnrivaled.com, call 1-800-NITTANY weekdays from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. or visit the Bryce Jordan Center ticket office weekdays from 10 a.m-6 p.m.
Nearly 1,800 new season tickets have already been sold for the 2018 campaign.