It has been a roller coaster year for the Lady Lions in 2012, one that has seen the program be taken to new heights. I took a look back and compiled a list of the top five headlines surrounding the Lady Lions in 2012.
This headline has nothing to do with play of the Lady Lions, but it shows what weight sport can carry off the court.
In 2012, the Lady Lions donated $203,000 to six charities to help fight breast cancer. It is a record number for the team and illustrates how far the event has come over the years.
It was an early chance for the Lady Lions to avenge their Sweet 16 loss against Connecticut and prove they are deserving to be considered as a powerhouse in women's basketball. However, Connecticut had something to say about that.
While it is only one loss in a long season, it was an opportunity for Penn State to show the world that the team is for real in a hyped Sweet 16 rematch.
Before the rematch, there was the first meeting between the two teams.
While Penn State lost to Connecticut, it opened new doors for the program. The Lady Lions saw firsthand how a team as successful as Connecticut plays and returned back to the Sweet 16 for the first time since 2004.
Coaches and players often disregard morale victories, but Penn State's return to the Sweet 16 for the first time in eight seasons, is big for a program that was struggling a few years ago.
This headline ties into another, that Coquese Washington stayed at Penn State despite a head coach opening Michigan.
The program has been rejuvenated under Washington and her contract extension is an exciting reassurance that Penn State will continue being a mainstay in women's basketball.
Washington's five-year contract extension is worth $3.5 million and lasts until 2017.
It's the lasting image of the 2011-12 season, the Lady Lions celebrating a Big Ten title as confetti rained down from the rafters at the Bryce Jordan Center.
For the first time since 1996, the Lady Lions were Queens of the Big Ten and returned from the dogs days that plagued the team since the scandal that surrounded Rene Portland's exit.
The vision of Penn State returning to one of the top programs in women's basketball, stopped being a dream, and finally became a reality with the title.
Agree or disagree with our list? Tweet us your reactions @TDC_WBasketball. Also, tweet us with your predictions for what will be the top five headlines in 2013.