Making a Penn Statement!

There is nothing like hundreds of fans telling you that you screwed up! Well the Nittany Nation did just that with the NitPick Assistant Coach of the Year award, flooding Fight On State with emails and private messages casting their votes for the Nittany Lions' wide receiver coach and recruiting coordinator.

Although the original NitPick Assistant Coach of the Year poll had coaches Tom Bradley, Galen Hall, Larry Johnson, Jay Paterno and Ron Vanderlinden up for the award, a few hundred fans felt that Mike McQueary deserved not only to be included as a candidate, but as the winner of the honor.

This represents the first time in the several years PSU Playbook/Fight On State has run player and coach polls that a write in campaign has earned an award. Although Galen Hall won the poll among the preselected candidates with 254 votes, Mike McQueary earned the top spot with over 300 votes posted, emailed or private messaged to FOS, which represents an quite an amazing statement on the part of Penn State fans.

Here are some of the praises sent to us about Coach McQueary:

"Big Red has transformed recruiting and sparked the future of the program!!" -Dan S.

"McQueary worked wonders with a group of inexperienced freshmen and turned them into an unit featured in ESPN Magazine." -Kyle T.

"The fans questioned the hire of MM early on, but he has proven he can coach and recruit." -Jason A.

"Look at his recruiting efforts, the guy is a workhorse and deserves the award." -Chris T.

In terms of this season, McQueary's wide receiver unit accounted for 2,252 yards and 17 touchdowns, a 13% increase in reception yardage and 70% increase in receiving touchdowns over the 2004 results.

Freshmen Deon Butler, Jordan Norwood and Derrick Williams combined pulled in 1,279 yards, representing 57% of the reception yardage this season.

In terms of recruiting, McQueary has the led the charge in pulling in the Class of 2005, which included Derrick Williams, Justin King and Kevin Kelly, all of whom made an immediate impact this season as true freshman. He is also coordinating the efforts of assembling an impressive Class of 2006 which boasts standouts like Jared Odrick, Tom McEowen, Chris Bell, Aaron Maybin and the most recent addition to the class Lou Eliades.

So with that, Mike McQueary is the 2005 NitPick Assistant Coach of the Year. The other 2005 NitPick winners are:

  • Offensive MVP: Michael Robinson (92% of vote)
  • Defensive MVP: Paul Posluszny (58% of vote)
  • Special Teams MVP: Ethan Kilmer (77% of vote)
  • Rookie of the Year: Deon Butler (68% of vote)
  • Play of the Year: NW 4th and 15 (66% of vote)
  • Unsung Hero of the Year: Offensive Line (40% of vote)

    The NitPick Awards are the only season-end honors provided to the Penn State football program by the fans of the Nittany Nation. Voting is conducted exclusively at FightOnState.com.

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