UNIVERSITY PARK — Players ran out of the tunnel at beaver stadium, entering a new era of Penn State football.
For the first time, hundreds of student athletes shared the field with them showing they are one team, one university, united.
“It was exciting to see them out on the field again,” said Tim Cuff of Old Forge.
“It was outstanding. Really good for the kids that are out there playing today and the support of all the fans, showing that to them, I think it was exceptional,” said Joe Kusner, of Milford.
97,000 of fans turned out to support the Nittany Lions in their first game of the season against the Ohio Bobcats.
With a new coach in Bill O’Brien and also for the first time names on the uniforms, a lot has changed in the game day experience, but fan support is still the same.
“I think we`re one family and I think we can really come together. We have a lot to play for, pride. These are men and Bill O`Brien has really done a great job.” said Milt Hefft, of Dallas.
One thing that hasn`t changed though, the tailgating tradition in Happy Valley.
Fans sporting their blue and white jam the lots around the stadium despite a scandal, allegations of a cover up, and tough NCAA sanctions.
Football and school spirit are back in Happy Valley.
“We feel excited! It`s a new season and a new start/ We`re great, but with even though we loved Joe Pa, I think its time move on,” said Mary Helen Shelton, of Summit Hill
“Everyone has their own opinions, but we just want to say that we`re still here and love it. (but with) we still are and always will be Penn State,” said Julia Reed, of Honesdale.
Despite a tough loss to the Ohio Bobcats, 24 to 14, thousands of students fans and alumni, joined the blue band to sing the Penn State alma mater, showing they still are Penn State proud.