When you close your eyes and think about Penn State football, one position comes to mind above all else. These are the players who set the standard for what it means to play linebacker in Happy Valley.
Penn State is LBU and it’s pretty much an undisputed title. The Nittany Lions have always had some much talent in the middle of the defense that two of the best NFL linebackers to ever come out of the program didn’t even play the position in college.
Matt Millen and Dave Robinson both played defensive line at Penn State before transitioning to linebacker in the NFL. Millen won four Super Bowls in the between the Raiders, 49ers, and Washington Football Team, and Robinson made the NFL Hall of Fame.
Both of those players add to the legend and legacy of LBU but didn’t make the list. Instead, we’ll start with a player whose own story started in State College, PA.
Penn State: 2006-09
Josh Hull was never named an All-American and was only a seventh-round NFL draft pick, but he absolutely defined LBU, as well as almost any other player in Penn State history. Hull grew up in State College Pennsylvania and played his high school football at Penns Valley High School.
He walked on to the Penn State football team and first got a chance to play in 2008 when starting outside linebacker Sean Lee tore his ACL. Hull stepped in and recorded 75 total tackles while playing alongside NaVorro Bowman.
He had a career-high nine tackles in the 2009 Rose Bowl, and in his final collegiate season recorded 116 tackles and 8.5 tackles for loss. Hull could have played elsewhere, but was determined to play for his hometown Nittany Lions. That dedication deserves mention on this list.