The White Out in Happy Valley is described by some as “The Greatest Show in College Sports.”
ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit says “There’s nothing like the White Out in Happy Valley.”
The White Out game in Happy Valley >>> 👏
— ESPN College Football (@ESPNCFB) September 15, 2021
Saturday night, over 100,000 fans will be in attendance at Beaver Stadium for The White Out and a big football game between two ranked teams, Penn State and Auburn. The festivities will begin early as ESPN’s College GameDay will broadcast live from Penn State starting at 9 a.m. and then it will be the national game of the week on ABC.
This is the type of atmosphere that schools like to host major recruits in and that will be the case for James Franklin and his staff as they’ll have close to 100 high school recruits from all different classes at the game. One of those players that will take in the day long festivities will be 2023 4-star cornerback Lamont Payne from Chartiers Valley High School in Pittsburgh.
Nittany Sports Now caught up with Payne on Friday morning who tells us that his day is something he’s been waiting for a long time.
“I just can’t wait,” said Payne. “It’s something that everyone is talking about. All week I’ve been thinking about the White Out and I’ve been counting down the days since Monday. I’m just really ready at this point. I’ve seen and have been watching videos about the White Out. Everyone’s been telling me that will be such a cool experience for me to be at and I look at it as really a blessing that it’s something that I’m able to take in and enjoy. I can’t wait.”
Payne also understands that a football game will be played and that this Nittany Lion program is one that’s recruiting him and has been recruiting him since extending him an offer during the summer. The 6-foot-1 cornerback also holds offers from Pitt, West Virginia, Rutgers, Syracuse and Virginia Tech but appreciates that Franklin and Terry Smith have treated him like a priority recruit since offering him.
“The coaches have been really good at checking on me weekly to see how I’m doing and making sure that I’m doing all the important things that I need to do, the stuff that matters. They are very cool with me and have created a good bond that I appreciate it. I look at it as pretty surreal that Penn State is such a big-time program and they’re a team that’s always on TV and with that, how hard they’re recruiting me and want me to play for them. That’s very important to me and a real blessing, honestly.”
— James Franklin (@coachjfranklin) September 16, 2021
“This weekend is going to be a little of both in terms of me just having fun and enjoying the game but also will treat this like a business trip because if I do decide to go there, I need to look at things. But I’m definitely going to have fun and try and talk and bond with coaches and the players. I just want to enjoy my time there.”