Penn State Athletics
Ricky Rahne was impressed with Penn State's support when he arrived three years ago.

Penn State assistant Ricky Rahne wowed by team’s vibe, Chris Godwin impresses Bucs, and more

We hope you’ll start your day with us here at as we work to prepare you for everything you need to know – Monday through Friday – around the world of Penn State sports. Whether it’s football, basketball, wrestling, hockey, baseball or just a wild story we hope you’ll find interesting, we’re here to share it all with you.

This is your Penn State Wake-Up Call for Wednesday, May 24. Let’s get started.

Electric vibe charges Lions

During an appearance in Scranton, Pa., on Tuesday night, Penn State assistant coach Ricky Rahne discussed how the game-day atmosphere in Beaver Stadium gives the Nittany Lions an advantage — over their opponents and in recruiting.

Per Donnie Collins of the Scranton Times-Tribune, Rahne said:

“Every time we get a [recruit] to a game, it’s hard to beat us on that.”

Rahne, the tight ends and passing game coach, said he came to understand the nature of the program’s support at a pep rally the day before the Lions opened the 2014 season against Central Florida in Dublin, Ireland.

It was James Franklin’s debut as coach, after three years at Vanderbilt. Rahne had also worked on the Commodores staff, and he marveled at the difference in the vibe surrounding the respective teams:

“At Vanderbilt, when we were there, we’d have to use silent cadence, at home, because [opposing fans] would take it over. It was like a high school game. We had more people at that [PSU] pep rally than we had at two or three games there.”

That is why, Rahne concluded, the future is so bright for the Lions:

“Penn State is always going to succeed. Winning breeds winning.”

Auspicious debut for Chris Godwin

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers tweeted out video of former Penn State wide receiver Chris Godwin in action at the start of organized team activities Tuesday. Godwin, a third-round pick, made an impression on’s Pete Prisco, who also took to Twitter.

Women’s lacrosse team faces Maryland

Penn State, in the NCAA women’s lacrosse semifinals for the second straight year, faces unbeaten and top-ranked Maryland on Friday in Foxboro, Mass. The winner advances to the championship game on Sunday against the Navy-Boston College survivor.

The Lions (17-3), who fell to eventual champion North Carolina in the semifinals last year, haven’t beaten the Terrapins (21-0) since 2005. Maryland eked out a 16-14 victory in State College earlier this season.

Per David Eckert of the Daily Collegian, coach Missy Doherty sees little to choose from between the two teams:

“I think we have similar styles of play, it makes for an exciting match. But they have a lot of scorers. Our defense needs to be ready to step up.”

The Lions, seeking their first title-game appearance since 1989, advanced to the semis with a 14-12 victory over Princeton in last Sunday’s quarterfinals. Kayla Brisolari’s goal with 3:42 left snapped a 12-12 tie, and Katie O’Donnell added an insurance goal.

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