STATE COLLEGE, Pa. – The tradition lives on at Beaver Stadium in State College. The Penn State Nittany Lions took the field for the start of a new season without Joe Paterno for the first time in 46 years.
“It feels like I’m back with my family. I’m here for a new start and a new beginning and we’re ready to start a new chapter for Penn State,” says Junior student John Ventura.
The “roar restored” as players showed off their new uniforms with their names on the back, now led by new Head Coach Bill O’Brien.
“Let’s Go State!” was the chant heard throughout the stadium from the time the Blue Band marched out up until the games end, even after the team suffered a difficult loss to Ohio University.
The tailgating started early. Cars, Rv’s and trailers packed the lots starting at 8 a.m. Young and old, some families have been coming to the season home opener for generations.
Fans hung signs saying “We Bill-ieve” and “You stayed with us. We’ll stand with you.”
A moment of silence was held on the field for the victims of sexual abuse. There was no mention of late head coach Joe Paterno who was fired in the wake of Jerry Sandusky abuse scandal and alleged cover up by the University.
“We want to show everyone that we are sticking together and we can pull through this,” Brett Zeider told Eyewitness News. He’s been coming to games since he was six years old.