TribLIVE

| Sports

 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Mauti injury mars Penn State's victory over Indiana

Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review - Penn State Nittany Lions running back Michael Zordich (9) scores past Indiana Hoosiers linebacker David Cooper (42) and safety Mark Murphy (37) on a 4 yard touchdown run in the 3rd quarter at Beaver Stadium in University Park on November 17, 2012. Penn State defeated Indiana 45-22.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em> Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review </em></div>Penn State Nittany Lions running back Michael Zordich (9) scores past Indiana Hoosiers linebacker David Cooper (42) and safety Mark Murphy (37) on a 4 yard touchdown run in the 3rd quarter at Beaver Stadium in University Park on November 17, 2012. Penn State defeated Indiana 45-22.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review - Penn State Nittany Lions defenders Brad Bars (bottom) Anthony Zettel (98) and Deion Barnes (18) sack Indiana Hoosiers quarterback Cameron Coffman (2) during the 4th quarter at Beaver Stadium in University Park on November 17, 2012. Penn State defeated Indiana 45-22.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em> Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review </em></div>Penn State Nittany Lions defenders Brad Bars (bottom) Anthony Zettel (98) and Deion Barnes (18) sack Indiana Hoosiers quarterback Cameron Coffman (2) during the 4th quarter at Beaver Stadium in University Park on November 17, 2012. Penn State defeated Indiana 45-22.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review - Penn State Nittany Lions quarterback Matthew McGloin (11) passes against the Indiana Hoosiers at Beaver Stadium in University Park on November 17, 2012. Penn State defeated Indiana 45-22.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em> Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review</em></div>Penn State Nittany Lions quarterback Matthew McGloin (11) passes against the Indiana Hoosiers at Beaver Stadium in University Park on November 17, 2012. Penn State defeated Indiana 45-22.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review - Penn State Nittany Lions wide receiver Allen Robinson (8) eludes Indiana Hoosiers defenders behind on a 53 yard 2nd quarter touchdown pass during their game at Beaver Stadium in University Park on November 17, 2012.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em>  Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review</em></div>Penn State Nittany Lions wide receiver Allen Robinson (8) eludes Indiana Hoosiers defenders behind on a 53 yard 2nd quarter touchdown pass during their game at Beaver Stadium in University Park on November 17, 2012.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review - Penn State Nittany Lions wide receiver Allen Robinson (8) hauls in a 26 yard 1st quarter touchdown pass over Indiana Hoosiers cornerback Brian Williams (7)during their game at Beaver Stadium in University Park on November 17, 2012.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em>  Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review</em></div>Penn State Nittany Lions wide receiver Allen Robinson (8) hauls in a 26 yard 1st quarter touchdown pass over Indiana Hoosiers cornerback Brian Williams (7)during their game at Beaver Stadium in University Park on November 17, 2012.
Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review - Penn State Nittany Lions senior linebacker Michael Mauti (42) is consoled by his father Rich Mauti as he is carted off the field after he suffered a knee injury against the Indiana Hoosiers at Beaver Stadium in University Park on November 17, 2012. Penn State defeated Indiana 45-22.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em> Barry Reeger | Tribune-Review </em></div>Penn State Nittany Lions senior linebacker Michael Mauti (42) is consoled by his father Rich Mauti as he is carted off the  field after he suffered a knee injury against the Indiana Hoosiers at Beaver Stadium in University Park on November 17, 2012. Penn State defeated Indiana 45-22.

College Football Videos

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

By Scott Brown
Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012, 2:10 p.m.
 

UNIVERSITY PARK — Gerald Hodges summed up what his coaches and teammates seemed to be thinking when asked about the injury that has almost certainly ended Michael Mauti's Penn State career and could cloud his NFL future.

“If I had a knee to give him, I would definitely give it to him without question,” Hodges said after Penn State beat Indiana, 45-22, at Beaver Stadium despite giving up 454 passing yards. “We just hope he regroups from it.”

Mauti suffered what appears to be his third season-ending knee injury at Penn State after Indiana running back D'Angelo Roberts tried to cut block him Saturday in the first quarter.

Mauti had to be taken off the field on a cart, and when the fifth-year senior returned to the Penn State sidelines on the fourth quarter he did so on crutches.

Coach Bill O'Brien said he is not ready to rule out Mauti playing in Penn State's regular-season finale next Saturday against Wisconsin until there is a diagnosis.

What is worrisome about the injury is that it occurred to the same knee in which Mauti tore his ACL last season.

“I'm not sure the extent of the injury, but it doesn't look that great right now,” said Mike Hull, who replaced Mauti in the lineup and turned in a career-high 11 tackles as well as a sack. “I feel so bad for him for everything that has happened.”

Mauti has torn the ACL in both knees. Sustaining the injury in his left knee for a second time in two years could end any chance of Mauti being selected during the first two days of the NFL Draft.

“Michael will definitely be in our thoughts and our prayers,” Penn State quarterback Matt McGloin said. “You can't replace a guy like Mike. He's a great friend, he's a great person and he's a great player and our leader. ”

NFL draft expert Mel Kiper Jr. said late week the only question about Mauti is his durability. And that was before his latest knee injury.

“If it wasn't for the knee injuries, then you'd probably be looking at a solid second-round pick, maybe even a late first,” Kiper said Wednesday.

Mauti entered Saturday's game as the Big Ten's sixth-leading tackler with 9.3 stops per game. He also was tied for third in the conference with three interceptions.

The 6-foot-2, 232-pounder became the face of Penn State football after NCAA sanctions threatened to bury the program in July. Mauti and other seniors helped O'Brien hold the program together.

“He was one of the guys who helped me to decide to stay, just talking with me every day, giving me confidence and telling me how much I meant to the football program,” said Hull, who considered transferring to Pitt before staying at Penn State.“I just can't believe it was him. He's such a great guy.”

O'Brien said he didn't know if the block that knocked Mauti out of the game was a dirty play.

Mauti likely won't get to run out of tunnel before next Saturday's 3:30 p.m. game, and his final send-off as a Penn State player probably came before he was carted off the field.

His coaches and teammates walked onto the field and applauded Mauti as a sign of respect.

“I've coached a Hall of Fame quarterback and Hall of Fame receivers and great players, and he's one of the most special players I've been around,” O'Brien said. “He embodies what Penn State is all about: tough, grind it out, smart. He's just a fantastic kid.”

Scott Brown is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at sbrown@tribweb.com.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Stories

  1. Ejections, heated moments mark Pirates’ win over Reds
  2. Zimbabwe alleges Murrysville doctor illegally killed lion
  3. New Steeler Boykin clarifies remarks about former coach
  4. Pirates notebook: Burnett says ‘surgery is not an option’
  5. After early criticism, Haley has Steelers offense poised to be even better
  6. Making environmentalism divisive
  7. County council candidates chosen for District 11 ballot
  8. Rossi: Looking at the next great Steeler
  9. Penguins not alone in top-heavy approach to salary cap
  10. Former Lincoln Park star Rowan chooses N.C. State
  11. Steelers swap draft pick for Eagles cornerback