Every year when we at Black Shoe Diaries do this countdown, I peruse the new Penn State roster for jersey numbers. Colin Castagna, an Illinois walk on defensive end, currently wears number 46 for the Nittany Lions; there’s no available photos for us to use on the site, though, so today on BSD belongs to former Lion Tyrell Sales.
As I said last year, Sales was a relative unheralded recruit out of Butler, PA:
Sales redshirted in 2004, and as soon as he saw time as a redshirt freshman in 2005 made an immediate impact, seeing time in every game in that resurgent, Orange Bowl-winning season, even starting three games. Off the field, too, he showed promise, being named Academic All-Big Ten as a redshirt freshman. He was again a primary backup in his redshirt sophomore season, seeing time in every game but not able to crack the starting lineup behind Paul Posluszny, Dan Connor, and Tim Shaw.
It wasn't until his junior year that Sales shone. He started every game in 2007 and 2008, and while he was often outshone by the players he played next to (in addition to the NFL players above, his last two years saw him flanking current NFL stalwarts NaVorro Bowman and Sean Lee) but locking down his side of the field. His interception in the 2008 Iowa game was one of few bright spots in an otherwise forgettable night.
He also had a big part, as I never fail to mention, in Mark Rubin’s strip sack of Terelle Pryor that helped seal the win over Ohio State in the ‘Shoe in 2008.
Sales was a Captain on that squad, and went on to be a practice squad member of the Indianapolis Colts before spending time on the Montreal Alouettes and Jacksonville Sharks.