STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (WHTM) — Every weekend at THON is made more special by the hundreds of Penn State student-athletes on Saturday. The THON dancers are hyped up by performances from each team in a competition to see which Nittany Lions squad has the best dancers.

After 2021 and virtual performances by all the athletes, 2022 marked a return to the stage.

Teams like women’s tennis did their own rendition of High School Musical. There were Pitbull impressions, an appearance from Shakira (who looked an awful lot like a men’s soccer player in a blonde wig) and plenty of acrobatics.

Penn State football coach James Franklin, men’s basketball coach Micah Shrewsberry and women’s basketball coach Carolyn Kieger all surprised the THON dancers on stage and offered their words of encouragement for the families still battling cancer.

Plus, in a surprise turn of events, Steelers tight end Pat Freiermuth and Super Bowl Champion Rams Safety Nick Scott jumped on stage to help kickoff the Pep Rally.

Before the Saturday evening entertainment, hundreds of Penn State athletes spent an hour with the families battling cancer playing games and learning more about these courageous kids’ stories.

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This is all part of the 50th annual Penn State THON weekend, to benefit kids battling cancer at the Penn State Children’s hospital in Hershey. The event began Friday evening and runs until Sunday afternoon at 4 when the total of how much the students raised will be revealed.

To date, THON has raised over 190 million dollars for Four Diamonds to pay for treatment and research for childhood cancer.