Nittany Lion Shrine faux bronze mascot statue. The Nittany Lion as Penn State's mascot originated with Harrison D. Joe Mason in 1904. Plugged at base to allow for easy filling of gravel, stone or rock to provide extra weight. Comes with filling instructions of this hollow cast statue and how to care for your statuary. The class of 1940 presented a gift of a Nittany Lion, sculpted by Heinz Warneke from a large block of Indiana limestone, to Penn State in 1942. This crouching, powerful figure is now the popular Nittany Lion Shrine located near the Recreation Building on the University Park campus.