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Football Excellence Fund Receives $1 Million Donation from Farrell Family

The Penn State Football Excellence Fund is set to receive its second $1 million donation since August.

Michael J. Farrell, a Penn State alumnus and longtime donor, pledged through the Farrell Family Charitable Foundation his commitment to donate $1 million to the Fund. The Lasch Football Building’s team auditorium will be renamed to honor the 2012 Penn State football team, a team of which Farrell’s son, Mike, was a member.

The Football Excellence Fund financially supports a variety of football related endeavors, including facility and equipment upgrades, travel, and numerous other costs.

“We are so appreciative of the commitment that The Farrell Family Charitable Foundation has made to Penn State football,” said Athletic Director Sandy Barbour. “We value the long-standing relationship with Michael Farrell, and this gift assists us in providing world class conditions for success for our student-athletes on the field, in the classroom and in life.”

Farrell, the president and CEO of Pittsburgh’s Farrell & Co., is a 1971 Smeal graduate, on which he has served on its Alumni Society Board of Directors. An accomplished alumnus, Farrell was named a Penn State Alumni Fellow in 1993, the most prestigious honor given by the Penn State Alumni Association.

“This gift honors those who stayed, those who came, and those who came back,” he said. “By that, I mean the 2012 players and coaches who stayed in the face of adversity, those players and coaches who came later in spite of that adversity, and finally, those hundreds and hundreds of lettermen who came back in 2012 to support that team and the program.”

His million-dollar donation is hardly the first donation he’s given to his alma mater. He created the Farrell Center for Entrepreneurship, as well as one chaired and two endowed professorships. He further supported the Bryce Jordan Center’s construction.

In August, Paul Stecko and his family pledged a million-dollar donation to the Football Excellence Fund. The team locker room in the Lasch Building was to be renamed in his honor.

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Ben Berkman

State College, PA

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