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Penn State's Wisniewski selected a finalist for Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award

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Fan voting underway to help determine 2010 recipient

Penn State All-Big Ten guard Stefen Wisniewski (Bridgeville) has been selected a finalist for the prestigious Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award for the 2010 college football season.

The 10 Football Bowl Subdivision student-athletes excel on and off the field. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition. ?

An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.

The 10 finalists were chosen by a committee of national media from the list of 30 candidates that were announced in August. Fan voting is underway to determine the winner. Fans are encouraged to vote via the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award website (www.seniorCLASSaward.com.) through December 6. Fan votes will be combined with media and coaches votes to determine the winner.

Lowe’s, an official Corporate Partner of the NCAA, will announce the Senior CLASS Award® winner January 10, 2011, on ESPN prior to the Tostitos BCS National Championship Game.

Earlier this year, Wisniewski was named to the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® for his exemplary community service. The senior guard was a 2009 First Team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American.

Wisniewski is the only Big Ten football student-athletes among the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award finalists. Penn State standout Jason Yeisley was the 2009 Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award winner in men’s soccer.

A three-year starter, Wisniewski was named a 2010 first team pre-season All-American by Sporting News, Phil Steele's College Football Preview and Lindy's Football Preview. He also is on the Watch List for the Rotary Lombardi Award and Outland Trophy.

Wisniewski earned third team All-America and first team All-Big Ten accolades in 2009, starting all 13 games at center for the Nittany Lions. He moved back to guard during spring practice, where he started 12 games in 2008, helping Penn State win the Big Ten Championship and a berth in the Rose Bowl.

The talented and highly-motivated Wisniewski is among Penn State’s most accomplished and community service-oriented student-athletes. He has made mission trips to the Dominican Republic during spring break this past March and in the summer of 2009. Wisniewski has participated in the Student-Athlete Advisory Board (SAAB)’s Autism Awareness reading program, THON Make-A-Wish program, Pennsylvania Special Olympics’ State Summer Games, Habitat for Humanity, Athletic Directors Leadership Institute, Athletes In Action, The Second Mile and tutored local high school students, among his vast array of community service activities.

A secondary education major in the Schreyer Honors College, Wisniewski was selected a 2009 first-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American®, as he added to his 2008 second-team honor. Owner of a superlative 3.91 grade-point average, the squad's highest mark, Wisniewski will have an opportunity in 2010 to become Penn State's first three-time Academic All-American®. He should also be a strong candidate for the Campbell Trophy, the academic Heisman, presented by the National Football Foundation

A U.S. Army All-American at Pittsburgh Central Catholic High School, Wisniewski has earned a perfect 4.0 GPA the past three semesters. He spent the 2009-10 academic year student teaching 10th-grade English at State College Area High School.

Coach Joe Paterno’s Nittany Lions return to action Saturday at Minnesota for an 11 a.m. CT/12 p.m. ET kick in TCF Bank Stadium. The game will air on ESPNU, the Penn State Sports Network and www.GoPSUsports.com.

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