Penn State football conducted walk-on tryouts every two years prior to the 2022 season. Participants were greeted by a famous face…sort of.
Eli Manning participated in the trials as part of his ESPN segment “Eli Places.” To sell a little, Manning made a prosthetic nose as well as a pile of makeup, hoping to carry himself while trying to make the team.
Nittany Lions coach James Franklin was on Manning’s skit. But offensive analyst Danny O’Brien was not.
And O’Brien was favored as Manning got the ball to receivers more and more.
“We’ve got to sign this Chad Powers kid,” said one Penn State coach.
Here is an excerpt from the episode:
Eli Manning sneaked a walk on “Chad Powers” at Penn State and it’s absolute gold. pic.twitter.com/jaEYqBRcMh
— Kendall Baker (@kendallbaker) September 19, 2022
Manning (or rather Powers) put up record numbers in the 40 yard dash. But when it came to his throwing practice, he showed off that golden arm.
Manning’s display in the pocket was exactly what one would expect from a two-time Super Bowl champion.
But it didn’t shock everyone involved in the experiment. And when Franklin called Mann to the front of the camp and revealed his true identity, those who opened the jaws of that iconic Manning were quick to know their feelings.
Not only a chance to throw the football again. But the 41-year-old had to reveal that the Nittany Lions are also offering a scholarship to walk-on Barney Amore. After the news broke, Amor was thrown into a celebration by his teammates.
All in all, that made for a happy day at Happy Valley for Manning.