When Super Bowl XLVIII kicks off in New Jersey on February 2nd, there will be two former Nittany Lions taking the field. Fullback Michael Robinson and defensive tackle Jordan Hill are both members of the Seattle Seahawks and will be facing off against the Denver Broncos. This will be the 43rd time, out of the 48 Super Bowls played, that at least one former Nittany Lion will take part in the game.
Robinson is in his eighth NFL season, and his fourth with the Seahawks. Prior to coming to Seattle, he was a member of the San Francisco 49ers. He was drafted in the fourth round of the NFL Draft, but was immediately converted to running back by the 49ers.
Some unfamiliar with Penn State may find it surprising that when he was a member of the Nittany Lions, Robinson was a successful quarterback. During the 2005 season, he had one of the best campaigns in Penn State history, going 11-1 and leading his team to a victory in the FedEx Orange Bowl. That season, he was a first-team All-Big Ten selection and finished fifth in voting for the Heisman Trophy.
This year for the Seahawks, Robinson started three games and made two receptions for 27 yards. For his career, he has 422 rushing yards with two touchdowns and 610 receiving yards with three touchdowns.
Hill is in his rookie season with the Seahawks, having been a leader for the Nittany Lions in 2012.
While in college, Hill played an important role on the Nittany Lions’ defense. He started 24 games over his final two seasons in college. During his senior season, he was a second-team All-American selection and a first-team All-Big Ten selection.
Hill saw limited action for Seattle this year, playing in four games and recording seven total tackles. He also made 1.5 sacks.
10 former Nittany Lions were on rosters of teams that made the playoffs this season. 25 Nittany Lions were on NFL rosters at the end of this regular season, ranking Penn State in the top 15 nationally among schools who have players in the NFL.
Robinson and Hill are attempting to be the first former Penn State players to earn a Super Bowl ring since 2012 when Kareem McKenzie and Jimmy Kennedy were members of the New York Giants who won Super Bowl XLVI.
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