Still entered the Lasch Football Building weight room in the cold and darkness of an early January morning with one thing on his mind. After playing arguably the best game of his career against Florida in the 2011 Outback Bowl, it wasn't enough to help his team win, instead finishing with a 7-6 record. And so, since resuming workouts at the year's outset, Still has used the disappointments of 2010 and the game with the Gators as motivation leading into the 2011 season. Still set career-highs with seven hits (six solo) and a team season-high 3.5 tackles for loss, also a career-high, against Florida. A probable All-Big Ten candidate, he has an opportunity for a high impact fifth-year senior season. A starter in 12 games last year, Phil Steele's College Football Preview selected him preseason third-team All-Big Ten. He tallied 39 tackles, 10 tackles for loss and a team-high 4.0 sacks in 2010.
The gifted athlete has been a workhorse in the weight room and in off-season conditioning workouts to increase strength and stamina. Having suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee as a true freshman in 2007, Still's hard work in his rehabilitation seemingly went for naught when he suffered a broken ankle during preseason camp in 2008. He battled back to play in the regular-season finale with Michigan State that year and has emerged as a valuable contributor for the D-Line the past two seasons. Still has great physical attributes, talent and a hard-charging motor. He has demonstrated big-play capability and should be a leader and a significant contributor on the D-Line in 2011. Still is one of five returning Nittany Lions from Delaware. He is on schedule to graduate in December.
In his senior year, Still emerged as one the nation's most dominant forces from his defensive tackle position. In addition to being selected as the Big Ten's Nagurski-Woodson Defensive Player of the Year and the Smith-Brown Defensive Lineman of the Year, the team co-captain earned a spot on 10 All-America teams. A starter in 25 games over the past two seasons, he led Penn State with 17 tackles for loss and tied for second with 4.5 sacks in 2011. A finalist for the Outland and Nagurski Trophies and Bednarik Award, he finished the season with 55 tackles, including 29 solos, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery.
Devon Still began 2011 with one of the top games of his career and has an opportunity for a high impact senior season. Against Florida in the Outback Bowl, he set career-highs with seven hits (six solo) and a team season-high 3.5 tackles for loss. A 2010 honorablemention All-Big Ten selection, Still led the team with 10.0 tackles for loss and 4.0 sacks (minus-19) last season. A starter in 12 games, Still made 39 tackles and had one pass breakup. He made three tackles at No. 1 Alabama, including a sack. Still recorded three hits in the 24-0 win over Kent State, including 2.5 TFL for minus-nine yards, with a sack. He made three hits in the win over Temple, helping hold the Owls scoreless over the final three quarters and to 71 yards in the second half. He made four tackles, including one for a loss, at Iowa and had three stops against Illinois. He capped off the win at Minnesota by sacking QB Adam Weber in the end zone for his first career safety. He made two tackles and the sack for a loss of six yards against the Golden Gophers. Still led the defensive line against Michigan, making a then career-high six tackles and batting down a Denard Robinson pass on Michigan's final possession. He had four tackles and one sack for a six-yard loss in the comeback win over Northwestern and made two tackles against Michigan State. Still was on the field for 710 snaps last year, led by 80 in the victory at Minnesota. He is on schedule to graduate in December.
Playing in every game, Still made 19 stops, including 5.5 tackles for minus-15 yards. He recorded two sacks, including dropping Tate Forcier for a 10-yard loss in the Nittany Lions' 35-10 win at Michigan. Still recorded a minus-yardage play in five of the final six contests. He made a career-high three tackles each against Syracuse and Ohio State and had two stops in six other games. He recorded two tackles in the big Capital One Bowl win over LSU, including one for negative yardage. Still was on the field for 348 plays, led by 45 in the win over Indiana and 40 each against Illinois and Michigan.
Fellow PSU lineman Chris Bell reportedly pulled a knife on Still and threatened him after Still accused him of stealing a cell phone case from his locker; coaches stopped Bell before he could cause Still harm. After doing a great job in his rehabilitation of a torn ACL in his left knee, Still entered preseason camp with an opportunity to earn a spot in the defensive tackle rotation. But, he was dealt another setback, suffering a broken left ankle in August. Driven by the desire to make his Penn State debut in 2008, Still again worked hard in his rehab and saw action on 10 snaps in the regular-season finale win over Michigan State.
Still was a team captain for Coach Dan Ritter at Howard Technology HS. He was named all-state his senior year and was ranked the No. 12 defensive tackle recruit nationally. He was selected the Co-Lineman-of-the-Year by the Delaware Interscholastic Coaches Association. During his senior season, Still recorded 59 tackles, 18 of them for a loss. He also was a member of the basketball and track and field teams.
2007: Suffered torn ligaments in his left knee during the preseason.
2008: Missed almost the entire season after breaking his left ankle in August, returning to play 10 snaps in the regular-season finale.
Full name is Devon J. Still. He is the son of Antonio D. Still Sr. and Melissa A. Sangare. He has an older brother, Antonio Jr., and younger sister, Shaquara. He has a pair of cousins that have made their mark in the National Football League. Art Still played for the Kansas City Chiefs and Levon Kirkland was a standout with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Born July 11, 1989 in Camden, N.J.