Former Nittany Lions Ki-Jana Carter and Michael Mauti have message for people that doubted Penn State
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – They are both beloved former members of Penn State’s football team. Ki-Jana Carter helped run the Nittany Lions to an undefeated season in 1994 along with a victory in the 1995 Rose Bowl. He took the team’s first offensive play from scrimmage in that game 83 yards for a touchdown. Michael Mauti is one of the greats at Linebacker U for his toughness between the lines and his leadership off the field. He was instrumental in keeping the 2012 team together after the Lions were levied with crippling sanctions by the NCAA.
Carter and Mauti addressed the crowd at Penn State's Rose Bowl pep rally on New Year's Day and afterwards spoke with FOX43 in detail about their message to the crowd and every other college football fan that doubted the Nittany Lions would return to the top level of the sport.
"I didn't want it to be a typical pep rally speech and so I just told everyone thank you for staying with our program through the thick and thin," Carter explained. "Now we're getting back on top and we can appreciate it more. For the last four or five years, it's been us against the world. Everyone besides the Penn State family has been down on us. They wanted to write us off, they were trying to get rid of us. But they couldn't, that's why this was personal."
"It stirs up a lot of emotions. My message was really just to thank the crowd. To me, it's validation of the work that we put in as a senior class and all of the work these guys have put in, the players, the coaches," Mauti added. "We've been emotionally riding this roller coaster wishing for it, these coaches, these players pulled it out."