Staff Picks: Motivational Penn State Quotes We Want Displayed Outside The BJC

The past few months have been rough all around, but the Bryce Jordan Center’s helped keep spirits high in State College by displaying motivational quotes on the jumbotron outside the arena.

As part of this heartwarming gesture, the BJC has shared quotes like Garth Brooks’, “Stand straight, walk proud, have a little faith.” While this is an iconic line the country star that has performed at Penn State on multiple occasions, it got us thinking about other notable mottos and words of wisdom.

Over the years, Penn Staters have shared many quotable moments. With that in mind, here are some of our staffers’ picks for which ones we’d like to see displayed outside the BJC.

Matt DiSanto: “That’s what we DO!” — Bo Nickal

If the Bryce Jordan Center really wants to hype up the folks walking down University Drive, there’s no better way than plastering Bo Nickal’s words of wisdom on its sign. Nickal’s motto, which he famously uttered after defeating Myles Martin in the 2018 NCAA finals, encourages people to work hard, take pride in themselves, and win national titles like it’s nobody’s business.

Whether you’re passing by the BJC on your way to class or heading to an event at the arena, catching a glimpse of Nickal’s wise words will surely help you achieve your goals. Like he famously said, “You come to Penn State, you win big matches, you win team titles.” 

Frankie Marzano: “Today, you’ve got a decision to make. You’re gonna get better or you’re gonna get worse, but you’re not gonna stay the same. Which will it be?” — Joe Paterno

I think this quote ties in well with everything that is going on in the world right now. Since we all have extra time on our hands due to social distancing and store closings, we should make the most of every day that we have and take advantage of this time off.

Will Pegler: “They say you’re allowed to overcome early setbacks, we’ve done that. It’s on YOU now, the Committee!” — James Franklin

After opening up the 2016 season with a 2-2 record, Penn State went on a nine-game tear that included an infamous win over then-No. 2 Ohio State and a Big Ten Championship victory over Wisconsin. Along with that dream season, I doubt many Nittany Lion fans forget James Franklin’s electric post-game press conference after the title game in Indianapolis.

Fox Sports college football analyst Joel Klatt asked the head coach why he thought Penn State deserved to be in the College Football Playoff, and Franklin certainly didn’t mince his words. He called out the committee directly and gave a clear case as to why his team deserved to be in the nation’s top-four. While only a piece of the quote may fit on the BJC’s sign, the full statement can be read here:

“We just won the toughest conference in college football. We’ve won nine straight. They say you’re allowed to overcome early setbacks, we’ve done that. It’s on YOU now, the Committee!”

For full disclosure, the Nittany Lions ended up finishing the season at No. 5 and earned a trip to the Rose Bowl. Ohio State (which lost to the Nittany Lions at the White Out) snuck into the Playoff at the No. 3 spot and got rolled by Clemson 31-0 in the Fiesta Bowl.

Franklin’s passionate quote should be displayed on the sign as motivation for all Penn Staters to stay strong — even if the playoff committee won’t recognize your hard work.

Ryen Gailey: “Believe deep down in your heart you’re destined to do great things.” — Joe Paterno

I think this quote would fit perfectly on the BJC sign. It fully encompasses Penn State’s six core values: integrity, respect, responsibility, discovery, excellence, and community. As Penn State students and members of the community, we have great potential and access to amazing resources.

At the end of the day, a lot of what this university tries to teach students relates back to hard work and determination. And as Joe said, if you believe you are destined to do great things, there are endless opportunities out there.

Additionally, this would be a fantastic quote to display for athletes to read as they roll up to the arena. It’ll inspire them to do great things…like kick Ohio State’s butt.

Sam Brungo: “They’re a bunch of f*ckers.” — Bill O’Brien

After Penn State’s overtime victory over Wisconsin to close out the 2012 football season, head coach Bill O’Brien dropped the most legendary line since “We Are.” After the game, an ESPN reporter asked O’Brien how he had his team focus and secure the win, to which he replied: “They’re a bunch of fuckers.” Immediately realizing he had just dropped the f-bomb on national television, O’Brien attempted to cover up his tracks by discussing his team’s fighting spirit.

If O’Brien really was trying to say “fighters,” posting that on the BJC’s sign could help show support for those fighting the coronavirus or working on the frontlines.

However, if O’Brien actually meant to say “fuckers,” it could be directed to those who go out without masks…or to the coronavirus itself.

Your ad blocker is on.

Please choose an option below.

Sign up for our e-mail newsletter:
Support quality journalism:
Purchase a Subscription!

About the Author


Posts from the all-student staff of Onward State.

Penn State Planning $40.4 Million Renovations To Former Art Museum Building

The renovations would aim to create general purpose classrooms after the Palmer Museum was moved to the Arboretum.

No. 8 Seed Penn State Baseball Defeats No. 4 Seed Michigan 7-6 In Big Ten Tournament Semifinals

A two-run home run in extra innings off the bat of Adam Cecere put the Nittany Lions in the Big Ten Championship.

Ace Baldwin Jr. Confirms Return To Penn State Hoops For Fifth Year

Baldwin was named the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year during his first year in Happy Valley.