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Monday, August 22, 2011
PSU's McGregor wins Murray scholarship

By Adam Rittenberg

You're probably tired of reading what Brian Bennett or I are writing about Penn State's seemingly never-ending quarterback competition.

Maybe Shane McGregor could give us the real inside scoop.

McGregor, the Lions' third-string quarterback, recently earned a prestigious scholarship for, yep, his sportswriting skills. The senior is one of five students from around the country who earned a $5,000 scholarship for their work in a national essay competition sponsored by the Jim Murray Foundation.

The contest asked applicants to profile an influential sports figure on their campus. McGregor's choice was easy: Joe Paterno.

"When you have Joe Paterno as your coach, it's pretty clear what the story should be about," McGregor said. "The hard part was that it had to be under 1,000 words, so you had to choose your words wisely, but I liked the story."

Check out McGregor's essay on Paterno (scroll down).

An excerpt:
Paterno's influence has extended beyond the football field and into the culture of his university since the vision known as "The Grand Experiment," competing on a national level without academic compromise, began 45 years ago. There are no last names on the uniforms of his team or any varsity Penn State athletic team. One of two libraries on the University Park campus is named the "Paterno Library," after he and his wife, Sue, made a $3.5 million gift in 1998. A family gift supported the creation of an interfaith spiritual center. At the university's popular Creamery, where long lines are a tradition of each football weekend, one of the most popular ice cream flavors is Peachy Paterno.
And Penn State has never had an NCAA violation in any sport.
Winning is valued, but winning with integrity is held in highest regard.

McGregor, who is majoring in English and journalism, already has started to work on his first book. He carries a 3.89 GPA into the fall semester.

In other words, he puts Bennett and I to shame. Impressive guy.