Move over, Happy Valley. Rio de Janeiro will be the center of all things Penn State athletics come August.
Penn Staters in this year's Olympics:
|Monica Aksamit||USA||Women's Fencing||'12|
|Matt Anderson||USA||Men's Volleyball||'08|
|Matt Baranoski||USA||Men's Cycling||'16|
|Miles Chamley-Watson||USA||Men's Fencing||'13|
|Alisha Glass||USA||Women's Volleyball||'09|
|Christa Harmotto Dietzen||USA||Women's Volleyball||'09|
|Darrell Hill||USA||Men's Track & Field||'15|
|Max Holt||USA||Men's Volleyball||'09|
|Joe Kovacs||USA||Men's Track & Field||'12|
|Ali Krieger||USA||Women's Soccer||'06|
|Bobby Lea||USA||Men's Cycling||'06|
|Alyssa Naeher||USA||Women's Soccer||'09|
|Aaron Russell||USA||Men's Volleyball||'15|
|Katarzyna Trzopek||USA||Women's Fencing||'06|
|Ivan Contreras*||Mexico||Men's Volleyball||'97|
|Daniel Gomez-Tanamachi||Mexico||Men's Fencing||'13|
|Carlos Guerra||Mexico||Men's Volleyball||'03|
|Tom Hovasse*||Japan||Women's Basketball||'89|
|Shane Ryan||Ireland||Men's Swimming||'17|
A total of 15 of the 20 Penn Staters will be representing Team USA. The five international Lions will have the privilege of representing Mexico (3), Japan (1) and Ireland (1). Eighteen will be competing, while the other two (Ivan Contreras and Tom Hovasse) will contribute from the sidelines in coaching roles.
Penn State has a rich history of involvement with the Olympics. Dating back to 1948, at least one Penn Stater has competed in 17 of the last 18 games, with the only exception being the 1980 Olympics in Moscow (which was boycotted by 65 countries worldwide). With 15 new selections this year, Penn State's total number of Olympic participants grows to 108.
Penn Staters have won a total of 28 medals throughout Olympic history. Despite many success stories, however, a Penn State alumni has failed to win a gold medal since 1988. This batch of Nittany Lions will certainly hope to change that.
Penn State trails only Stanford in terms of total Olympic participants from a single university. Congratulations and good luck to all the Nittany Lions privileged enough to represent their countries this August in Rio.