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Penn State Football Retires First Number In History Of Program

by on September 07, 2013 1:52 PM

Penn State football had a first on Saturday afternoon, retiring the No. 22 jersey in honor of the program's only Heisman winner, John Cappelletti.

Being honored alongside the undefeated 1973 Nittany Lion squad, Cappelletti received a standing ovation from the crowd as it was announced that his No. 22 jersey would be retired. It's the first time a number has been retired in the history of Penn State football. 

Cappelletti won the 1973 Heisman Trophy as well as the Maxwell Award, the UPI College Football Player of the Year, the Walter Camp Award, the Chic Harley Award, and was awarded All-America honors. In his two-year running-back career, he gained over 100 yards in thirteen games with a career total of 2,639 yards and twenty-nine touchdowns.

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Cappelletti went on to play professional football from 1974 through 1983 for the Los Angeles Rams and the San Diego Chargers. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1993.

Penn State's all-time leading rusher Evan Royster also wore the number 22 and current running back Akeel Lynch wears the same number this year.

You'll still see Lynch wearing number 22 for the rest of his career at Penn State. The number 22 won't disappear until after Lynch is done -- at Cappelletti's request.

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