Penn State’s dominance on the defensive line started before the aughts, as Lou Benfatti proved.
The tackle from Green Pond, NJ, played in 49 games at Penn State - and started all of them, a rare feat for a big man. Narrowly missing out on the National Title-winning 1994 season*, Benfatti was named an All-American in his senior year in 1993 behind 64 tackles (6 for loss) and five sacks, coupled with one interception and a fumble recovery.
He was drafted in the third round, 94th overall, of the 1994 NFL Draft by the New York Jets, where he played for three seasons before his career was cut short due to injury. Benfatti went on to be an educator and high school principal.
Benfatti’s inclusion in our countdown gives me an excuse to post this, from our own Tim Aydin:
*yeah, I know.