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Penn State Football: Video: Bill O'Brien Addresses THON Families At Make-A-Wish Event

by on February 18, 2012 4:53 PM

The Lasch football building was bustling Saturday afternoon.

The squad room was packed with high school juniors and their families and coaches visiting as part of Junior Day. New quarterbacks coach Charlie Fisher arrived for his first day on the job.

And, you could hardly maneuver around the players’ lounge because of the annual THON Make-A-Wish event. Twenty-five Four Diamonds Fund families and 40 Penn State football players toured Lasch, including trips to the team’s weight room and locker room.

“It’s exciting,” senior quarterback Matt McGloin said. “When you have the opportunity to give back, especially to the kids involved with THON, you’re gonna take it. The least we can do is let them see where we hangout, where we work out, and just seeing the expression on their faces really makes your day.”

Rich Wessner and his two children, including 13-year-old Four Diamonds Fund child Jacob, toured the football facility with freshman linebacker Drew Boyce, who later Saturday night will join the other freshmen on stage at the Bryce Jordan Center for the athletes’ talent show.

The Wessners, from Auburn, Pa., found out they were selected for the program about three weeks before THON weekend. Jacob, sporting a blue No. 17 jersey, was most excited to meet McGloin, and when coach Bill O’Brien walked into the room, he was the first person to go up and ask for a picture.

O’Brien addressed the crowd for about three minutes. Other members of the coaching staff hung around for ice cream, cookies and brownies, including Fisher. O’Brien signed footballs, T-Shirts, jerseys and anything else that the kids could hand him.

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Nate Cadogan made sure to have his group promise to return next year. For many players, it’s a highlight of their offseason.

“Seeing them makes you realize how fortunate you are and how blessed you are to be here at Penn State,” McGloin said.

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Photo Gallery - THON Make-A-Wish event in the Lasch Building

Nate Mink covers Penn State football and news for He's on Twitter as @MinkNate.
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