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Countdown to Blue-White / 15 Days: Five Players Penn State Fans Hadn't Heard Of

by on April 05, 2013 12:30 AM

This is the 19th in a 33-day series about Penn State football program leading up to the Blue-White Game on April 20. Click here for past installments in the series.

Big name recruits always get the hype. There isn't anything wrong with that, but every team is full of players that fans never heard of before they suddenly became a household name. It could be a blocked punt or a 80-yard reception that makes a player known, but whatever it is, they started out as a nobody.

Penn State has its fair share of big names heading into the 2013 season, but the names you haven't heard of will be the ones that could truly help determine the outcome of this season.

How often do these unheard of players become stars? Here are five players Penn State fans may have not known about before their moment in the spotlight.

1. Anthony Scirrotto (Safety)

Scirrotto entered as a two-star recruit as a member of the 2005 recruiting class. He played a considerable amount of time at safety his freshman year but burst on to the scene in 2006 with a Big Ten conference-leading six interceptions. Scirrotto also returned an onside kick for a touchdown against the University of Illinois, and blocke a punt against Michigan State University, both in 2006. Scirrotto was an All-Big Ten first team selection in 2008.

2. Kevin Kelly (Kicker)

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As a two-star kicker Kelly came in to Penn State and won the job off the bat in 2005. Kelly would go on to kick the game winning field goal in the triple-overtime Orange Bowl victory against Florida State. Kelly finished with 376 career kicking points, making him the Big Ten's all-time kick scoring leader. He also became Penn State's all-time scoring leader in 2007 and even scored his first career touchdown against Michigan State on a fake field goal attempt. Kelly ended his career with five separate Penn State records to his name.

3. Jordan Norwood (Receiver)

Playing as a part of what is likely Penn State's greatest receiving tandem of all-time, it's surprising that Norwood picked Penn State at the last minute over Bucknell. A State College native, Norwood was able to join his father who was an assistant at Penn State at the time. A quite personality, Norwood had a quite yet consistent career catching 450 or more yards in all four season starting at Penn State.

4. Deon Butler (Receiver)

Playing alongside Norwood and Derrick Williams, Deon Butler walked-on at Penn State as a defensive back. After a redshirt freshman year Butler broke four school freshmen records: season receptions (37), receiving yards in a game (125, versus Wisconsin), season yards (691), and touchdown catches (9). After that breakout year Butler went on to be on of Penn State's greatest receivers of all-time.

5. Matt McGloin (Quarterback)

While his time at Penn State ended only a few months ago, Matt McGloin's superb play as a Nittany Lion, especially under Bill O'Brien leads many to forget that he was a walk-on. McGloin spent time behind Penn State legend Darryl Clark before getting his shot to compete against Rob Bolden. Between splitting time with Bolden and a strong year under Bill O'Brien, McGloin was able to shatter numerous passing records at Penn State. McGloin is Penn State's Single Season Passing Leader (3,271) Single Season Touchdown Leader (24) Penn State's Single Season Completion Leader (270) and Penn State's Career Leader in Touchdown Passes (46).

Day 19: Is the Change in Defensive Coordinators Reason for Concern?

Day 18: O'Brien Raises Expectations and Intensity in Year Two

Day 17: How Does Zayd Issah's Situation Impact the 2013 Roster?

Day 16: A Dozen Gimmicks for Penn State’s Scrimmage

Ben Jones covers Penn State football and basketball for He's on Twitter as @Ben_Jones88.
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