PSU snapshot: 1980

A daily series featuring each Penn State football season from 1947-2019:

Year: 1980

Coach: Joe Paterno

Final record: 10-2

Final ranking: AP No. 8, UPI No. 8

Regular-season wins: Colgate, Texas A&M, Missouri, Maryland, Syracuse, West Virginia, Miami (Fla.), N.C. State, Temple

Regular-season losses: Nebraska, Pitt

Bowl game: Beat Ohio State, 31-19, in the Fiesta Bowl

Team stat leaders: Curt Warner rushed for 922 yards; Todd Blackledge passed for 1,037 yards; Kenny Jackson caught 21 passes for 386 yards; Herb Menhardt made 15 of 21 field goal attempts; Chet Parlavecchio had 72 tackles; Gene Gladys had 6 sacks; Paul Lankford intercepted 4 passes

All-Americans: OT Bill Dugan, OG Sean Farrell

Neil Rudel’s take: Maybe the toughest personnel decision of Paterno’s career unfolded as, after three games, he picked Todd Blackledge as the starting quarterback over Jeff Hostetler. Both proved worthy, but only one could start. Hostetler transferred to West Virginia, married coach Don Nehlen’s daughter and went on to a fine NFL career. Blackledge eventually led the Lions to their first national title. This year was a building block at 10-2, highlighted by beating Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl. Off-the-field moves: Paterno became the AD, greasing the way for Jim Tarman; J.T. White, the lone assistant left from the Rip Engle era (other than JoePa), retired, and another 7,000 seats were added, bumping capacity to 83,770.


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