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Penn State's Conlan gets College Football Hall of Fame nod

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Thursday, May 22, 2014, 7:00 p.m.

Shane Conlan received word earlier this year he had been nominated for induction into the College Football Hall of Fame.

“I didn't think I had a chance, though,” the former Penn State star linebacker said. “They explained how it's the hardest of all the halls of fame to get into — just .002 percent of players.”

The 1986 All-American was one of 14 former players who joined two coaches as those announced for enshrinement Thursday.

“I was a zero-star recruit coming out of high school, so I owe (former PSU defensive coordinator) Tom Bradley and (former PSU coach) Joe Paterno, along with my high school coach,” Conlan said in a phone interview from Dallas, where the announcement of the class was made. “I didn't really get recruited by anybody, and those guys found me.”

Conlan, who lives in Sewickley, is vice president of corporate partnerships with the Power. A captain on the 1986 national champion Nittany Lions, Conlan fought back tears when he addressed media at the announcement.

Joining Conlan for December induction ceremonies will be former Alabama linebacker Derrick Thomas, TCU running back LaDainian Tomlinson, South Carolina receiver Sterling Sharpe, USC tackle Tony Boselli, Georgia Tech quarterback Joe Hamilton, Louisiana Tech tackle Willie Roaf, North Carolina cornerback Dre Bly, Purdue defensive tackle Dave Butz, Maine linebacker John Huard, Stanford running back Darrin Nelson, UCLA quarterback John Sciarra, McNeese State defensive back Leonard Smith and Mississippi tight end Wesley Walls. Mike Bellotti (Oregon) and Jerry Moore (North Texas, Texas Tech and Appalachian State) were coaches chosen.

The Associated Press contributed. Chris Adamski is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at or via Twitter @C_AdamskiTrib.

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