NITTANY NOTES: Locker Room

Get an exclusive report on what went down after the Nittany Lions beat Illinois in a battle of ranked teams at Beaver Stadium Saturday night.

Beaver Stadium was rocking as Penn State beat Illinois 38-24 Saturday night. But some interesting stuff happened after the game, too.

Here is the lowdown:

Excitement All Around

Clearly the win created a tremendous amount of post-game excitement for the players, who were "high-fiving, chest-bumping and hooting and hollering," an observer said. "[The players] were having a lot of fun with it."

The coaches were also enjoying the post-game moment. "There were a lot hugs going around," another observer said. "The staff was congratulating both sides on a pretty good all-around effort."

Back to Business

Head coach Joe Paterno took the center of the locker room floor after an extended period of congratulations and excitement and turned the focus back to business.

"Joe was very excited for the win, but he got everyone back on task pretty quickly," an observer told us. "He started out saying, 'Good win. As of right now we're a team who knows how to win and we're a team who overcame adversity after [Illinois] marched down and scored.' "

Paterno continued, saying he was happy with the team's performance all-around, but went on to say, "We know our ultimate goal is not to beat Illinois, so be happy right now that we're 5-0, but we've got bigger achievements to work toward."

He stressed that the players should enjoy the moment, but they have to maintain their focus.

Have A Ball

Senior captain A.Q. Shipley handed out the offensive and defensive game balls for the game.

On the offensive side, Derrick Williams, who became the first player under Paterno to score a receiving, rushing and kick return touchdown in a single game, was honored with a pigskin.

On the defensive side of the ball, senior safety Anthony Scirrotto, who had some key plays including an interception, was awarded the game ball.

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