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PSU football teams finishes season at 17

Nittany Lions End Season Ranked No. 17

Penn State ends the season No. 17 in the Associated Press and Amway Coaches polls

 Courtesy of Penn State Athletics 

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Following another season with nine or more wins, the Penn State Football team finished in the Top 25 of both polls for the third-straight season. The Nittany Lions came in No. 17 in the final Associated Press (AP) and Amway Coaches polls. Additionally, Penn State was No. 12 in the final College Football Playoff Rankings announced in December.


Penn State finishes in the AP Top 25 for the 41st time in program history. The Nittany Lions end the season in the AP Top 25 in three consecutive seasons for the first time since a seven-year stint from 1993-99. Penn State has been ranked in the AP Top 25 for the last 40 weeks, dating back to the 2016 season, marking the fifth-longest streak in program history and longest streak since 1993-2000 when PSU was ranked for 121-straight weeks.


The Nittany Lions complete the season in the Coaches Top 25 for the 21st time in program history and the third-straight season. This is the first time Penn State has had three consecutive Top 25 finishes in the Coaches Poll since 2005-09.


Penn State is one of six teams (Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Washington) to rank in the Top 15 of the CFP final rankings in each of the last three seasons (2016-18).


The Nittany Lions ended the season with a 9-4 record and in third place in the Big Ten East. Penn State faced eight teams in the regular season which advanced to a bowl, earning five wins. Penn State has posted 14 consecutive winning seasons. Only five FBS teams have had a winning season each of the last 14 years (Oklahoma, Boise State, LSU, Wisconsin). Over those 14 consecutive winning seasons, Penn State has totaled at least nine wins in nine seasons, including the last three seasons.


Senior quarterback Trace McSorley capped his Penn State career with his name etched as the career record holder for passing yards (9,899), completions (720), 300-yard passing games (10), 200-yard passing games (28), rushing yards by a quarterback (1,697), rushing touchdowns by a quarterback (30), passing touchdowns (77), total offense yards (11,596), touchdowns responsible for (107) and wins as a starting quarterback (31). He earned All-Big Ten second team honors for the third consecutive year and became the 18th National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete in program history.


Defensively, senior cornerback Amani Oruwariye earned first-team All-Big Ten accolades from the coaches and media. He was the first Nittany Lion cornerback to earn all-conference first team honors since Justin King in 2007. Oruwariye grabbed three interceptions and had 12 passes breakups. Freshman linebacker Micah Parsons led the Nittany Lions with 82 tackles, including 4.0 tackles for loss. He is the first freshman in program history to lead Penn State in tackles.


Junior punter Blake Gillikin came on strong at the end of the season and broke the Penn State record for season punting average and moved into the top slot on the program’s career punting average list. Gillikin’s 44.0-yard punting average, which included a school-record three punts of 70 or more yards, broke the previous mark of 43.6 set by Ralph Giacomarro in 1981. For his career, Gillikin has a 43.3 average, which tops Jeremy Boone’s mark of 43.1 from 2007-09. In addition to his success on the field, Gillikin earned Google Cloud/CoSIDA Academic All-America first team with his perfect 4.0 grade-point average.

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