After successful eye surgery Penn State head football coach Joe Paterno no longer had a need for his signature Coke bottle lenses, so he did what any good Samaritan would do; donated them for a charitable auction. Yesterday Penn State announced that the famous glasses, decorated with a signature from the head coach, were auctioned at a price of $9,000 to a Baltimore couple.
Michelle and Kevin Coppola, both alumni of Penn State, are now proud owners of a unique discussion piece while the $9,000 will go to WPSU’s Connoisseur’s Dinner and Auction, which benefits the public broadcasting on campus. Seeing the glasses go up for auction made me wonder what kind of autographed memorabilia would grab the attention of Penn State fans next?
I came up with a couple ideas but look forward to seeing what you come up with as well.
Autographed game ball from the 1995 Rose Bowl champions
I am of the belief that the 1994 Penn State team will forever be one of the best teams to never be recognized as a national champion. Nebraska was named national champions of the 1994 season even though Penn State had an identical undefeated record.
Joe Paterno Autographed whale khaki pants
We all know that Paterno is known to wear rolled up khaki trousers on game day, so while owning an autographed pair of khaki’s would be great, owning the legendary whale khakis would be something else. The story goes that the Paterno family was on vacation in New Jersey and came along a pair of khaki pants with blue whales printed all over the pants. Paterno bought them as a bit of a joke with his wife, Sue, but the pants became legendary quickly. The 1982 football team was the first to see Paterno wear the whale pants, and they went on to win the national championship.
Lucky pants? Perhaps. Paterno has been missing the infamous whale pants since the mid-1980’s when his son, assistant coach Jay Paterno, lent a student the pants as part of a joke. The pants went missing for years but were eventually found in 1996.
Autographed letter from Richard Nixon certifying Penn State as national champion in 1969
Actually Texas was crowned national champion by the former President of the United States after the top ranked Longhorns defeated #9 Notre Dame in the Cotton Bowl. Meanwhile second ranked Penn State had shut down #6 Missouri in the Orange Bowl. Paterno was quoted afterward with one of the more famous phrases in his career;
“I’d like to know how could the president know so little about Watergate in 1973 and so much about college football in 1969?”
These are three items I would love to add to my personal collection. Now feel free to add to the list. Feel free to use real items or let your imagination run wild. I have done both above.
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