RIP Barbaro

I was saddened today to hear of the euthanization of racehorse Barbaro. From what I saw of him, he was a good horse who just loved to run. He fought the good fight to try and regain his health - but he lost his battle today.

It is amazing how much time, money and attention was paid to this horse, and his recovery. No doubt that he was a beloved animal, but when you look at the amount of money spent, and how much was actually donated, you have to wonder. How else could those monies have been spent? Other animals, people, environment - why this horse?

I think he became a symbol to people. They wanted him to live, not only for his sake, but for theirs as well. Barbaro's owners decided today, for his sake, to let him go.


Penn State in the Super Bowl

Well, we knew about Robbie Gould and John Gilmore, but...

According to GoPSUsports.com there are even more PSUers involved in this year's Super Bowl. Guard, Tyler Reed, is on the Bear's practice team and former PSU assistant coach, Kevin O'Dea, is Chicago's assistant special teams coach.

While the Colts do not boast any Nittany Lion players, former qb coach, Jim Caldwell, is their assistant head coach and quarterback coach (why the heaven isn't this guy still our qb coach? okay, he left in 92, but I want him back!), and Carlos Woods, a former strength and conditioning assistant is a scouting assistant for the team.

I'll be rooting for the Bears.


Penn State sends 3 to the Senior Bowl

Brown, Hunt and Posluszny will make the trip to Mobile, Alabama for the January 27th game. The 4pm game (as well as daily coverage of practice - Jan 22 - 25) will be televised on the NFL Network (Rutgers fans can help you find it).


How do you like my #7 jersey now?

Anthony Scirrotto has been named to the ESPN All Bowl Team for his performance in the Outback Bowl - highlighting not only his interception, but the "knock the snot out of you" hits he put on the volunteer receiver corps. See the story at GoPSUsports.com


From the mouths of babes...

Yes, babes, as in children...

Our priest's wife (calm down, I'm an Episcopalian) told the story yesterday, after mass, about her son, who is just now following football, and how distraught he was after the Eagles' loss on Saturday - He had asked "what happens now?" They told him "well, they have to come home." He then asked "but when will we see them again?" They answered, "well, August." Reportedly, his face then fell and he began to sob.

Oh, been there champ; been there.

When I told this story to a co-worker, she said that her son (age 4) had asked to watch the Giants (TOTAL BLASPHEMY, I know) on Saturday. His dad told him, "oh no, the Giants are done." He responded by asking "are they dead?"

Yes, sport, they are.

Total jinx/curse disclaimer - if anything happens to any Giant or any variation thereof - I had absolutely nothing to do with it - good karma.

Oh Danny Boy...

Dan Connor announced that he will be returning to PSU for his senior season. Danny says that it's, basically, because he has unfinished business at PSU (still paying off those phone bills?) - which is admirable - but you've got to think that he took a serious look at the defensive talent going into the draft this year and how that affected him.

He was really good this past year, but I think that he can get better and he can use this time to develop his skills as a leader. He had a good role model in Posluszny - and the rest of the defense is/will be relatively young - they have the talent (and the drive) to be really good.


News from the "other" football

It's happening - reportedly. David Beckham is going to sign with the LA Galaxy - not too pleased that he'll be on the west coast - but he'll have to travel east, sooner or later!

3 Lions to play in the Hula Bowl

All three players are from the Lions' defense. Jay Alford, Ed Johnson and Tim Shaw will represent Penn State in the 61st Hula Bowl this upcoming Sunday (Jan. 14th). The game starts at 8:30pm and will be televised on ESPN.


Over on GoPSUsports.com there's an article about how the team finished, statistically. Not surprising, the defense had some good numbers (top 15 in all major categories) - but what really surprised me was this...

In the individual NCAA statistics, sophomore placekicker Kevin Kelly (Langhorne, Pa.) was tied for second nationally in field goals, making 22 for a 1.69 per game average. Kelly led the Big Ten in field goals and kick scoring and was tied with Wisconsin running back P.J. Hill for the conference overall scoring lead at 7.4 ppg. Kelly’s 22 field goals tied Matt Bahr’s school record from 1978 and his 34 field goal attempts broke the PSU season mark of 33 by Chris Bahr in 1975.

Maybe we just made the kid kick too many times; we were so disappointed in him - and yet, his final "numbers" (not percentage) makes him a top scorer.


Blue White date announced

It's official - April 21st. It's time to start getting ready...

I guess, before then we'll have to assess the recruiting scene - signing day should be next month; contemplate the amount and method of (extortion) dues to be paid to the Nittany Lion club (eventually the due date will be 10 minutes following the final regular season game); cry ourselves to sleep for a week or so over the loss of key players (draft declaration deadline is Jan 15 - so we'll postpone this until next week); bellyache a little more once changes to the coaching staff are/are not announced; and, so on.

Oh I miss football already.

Go Eagles.

We're 24! We're 24!

The Lions cracked the top 25 in the final AP poll. The win over Tennessee really was a "good win." It's good to be back on the books.

The Championship Game last night was a bit shocking. I did not want tOSU to look bad (ie the big ten) - but I really didn't want them to win. I know it's disloyal to the big ten - but I really don't care - I don't have to see any uf fans (I read them, I don't see them) -

But then they went and looked bad too. So much for tressel's genius - he looked down right human (albeit female) last night.


PSU is 25 on the USA Today poll - guess who is 23? Tennessee - Tennessee? I guess that our losses to tosu and um and nd were not as "inevitable" per each team's bowl performance - but 51 days after the regular season isn't the "same" - and hey - We beat Tennessee - remember?

Oh, and, as expected, Boise State and Wisconsin got no respect.


Tell me why I don't like Mondays -

This week is (and I've already had proof this morning) going to be, what most loving refer to as, hell -

But I wanted to get in a few football items before my total descent...

- Joe Paterno was named on the Late Show Top Ten list on Thursday (01/04) - Number 3 on the list of "Ways you know you've watched too much college football" - "you ask yourself, 'What would Joe Paterno do?'" - I thought this was normal.

- I won the Philly Blog Fantasy Football league this year (14-1-0); I came in 2nd in the "points only" league - just 20 points behind (arrrrgghhhh) - 2 new shiny virtual trophies in my Yahoo! trophy case - nice.

- Sincere condolences to Mario Danelo's family and the USC community. Mario, apparently, fell to his death after slipping off an rocky cliff in Los Angeles. Very sad.

- two "wins" for the biased predictions over the weekend - 14-17

- Went to the Eagles' playoff game last night - It was awesome. Lots of fun. But they totally need to integrate "Kernkraft 400" and "Song 2"

- Tonight (tonight) is the National Championship game. tosu vs florida. I seriously don't want either team to win - but hopefully it will be a good game. The Big Ten has been doing well (only) against the SEC this post season - did you know that, as a starter, Troy Smith is 10-1 against ranked teams? Guess which team recorded that - 1; go ahead, guess...


Recruitment (brainwashing) continues...

I find that confections are a very effective means of conveying the "PSU's the best" message to, well, to everyone, but especially to children. Katie will now always associate Penn State with cake - very festive, stadium shaped cake.

Ah-hem, is it better or worse when the irish lose?

Oh, it's better, believe me, it's better. Yes, I know the old adage that you should root for the teams you've played - but all bets are off when nd is involved.

LSU looked bigger, tougher, faster, everythinger than the Irish last night -


Check out GoPSUsports.com

They have a lot of articles and photos from the Outback Bowl - and the transcript of Joe's post game press conference.


Outback Bowl Observations...

- throw the ball to Butler (okay, he misses one every now and then - but still throw it!)
- Tony Hunt lets his feet do the talkin' - until after the game
- Joe may have been a little slow to react to (good) big plays - but he had no problem recognizing the bad ones
- those "anti-concussion" helmets seem to pop off an awful lot
- Anthony Scirrotto thinks he's Ray Isom (oooh Michael Irvin is still hearing footsteps)
- Tony Davis can run
- the Outback Bowl needs to get better red dye next year
- while there was a lot of orange in the stadium - it really didn't look much different than a rainy day at Beaver Stadium
- throw the ball to Butler in the end zone (not the 3)
- the jinx (if any) that was caused by the orangish hue of the stitching on my Levis was not strong enough to fend off the Lions' victory
- Todd Blackledge tries too hard to be unbiased
- screaming "run baby run" over and over loudly can make an uninitiated baby cry - and playing peek-a-boo can make him stop.

Luckily, I'm not much of a gambler...

Kentucky by 8 - dang Bowdens. 6-7

Eenie meenie minus one - Beavers slide by Tigers - 6-8

Still don't like Spurrier - but 7=8

Minne produced a choke rivaled only by the Spartans, and Texas Tech's coach cried (couldn't have predicted that) - 7-9

Pur-didn't - I really don't care for turtles. 7-10

Okay, these close ones are killing me! Separation of Church and State - BC wins. 7-11

San Antonio Dec. 30, 4:30 p.m. (ESPN)
Texas had to come back to win this one - those dang Hawkeyes just love to prove the experts wrong. 8-11

Not at all sure why I went with the Hokies. Georgia, of course won. 8-12

This game was in Idaho - outside - absolute craziness. And yeah, the freakin Hurricanes won. 8-13

I'd be lying if I didn't say that I was surprised by this one. But when exactly are folks going to figure out that the football gods really don't like trash talk against the Lions? especially against their D-backs? PSU WINS! 9-13

Auburn does well in bowl games - they squeaked out a win against Nebraska 10-13

I'm really starting to dislike Wisky - However, it was a good win for the Big Ten. 10-14

"and scratch where it itches!" - WVU defeats a Ball-less GT team. 11-14

I am so disappointed in the Wolverines - they looked horrible - just horrible - how the heck did we lose to them? 11-15

Oh, if I'd truly gone with bias I'da said Boise State - the ultimate underdog of the bowl season contributing to one of the best games of the year. Hook and lateral and Statue of Liberty - awesome. 11 - 16

Wake held on for a while - but ultimately the defense just couldn't contain the Cardinals - 11-17

So a little face (but no money) was lost. oh well.

Hey, did I mention that I'm going to the Eagles' playoff game?

Best Most Exciting Thing Ever...

I'm going to the Eagles' playoff game against the Giants this weekend. My friends got me a ticket (really good friends) - I'm so excited!

It was a pretty great New Year's weekend!

My biased predictions didn't fair too well (I'll tally the carnage in a bit) - but PENN STATE won the Outback Bowl, defeating Tennessee 20 - 10. The Lions played a good game - it wasn't great, but it was good and the Vols' 3 turnovers were pivotal - especially the Tennessee fumble in the 4th quarter which Penn State ran back for a touchdown - the touchdown was, of course, great - but Tennessee was deep in the red zone at the time and driving with ease - the point turnaround was key -

Okay - how the H. E. double hockey sticks did Boise get a bowl game? It looked so dang cold! As a child, I used to whine that we should have a bowl game in Pennsylvania (ie, the Liberty Bowl) - but Dad would always say - they'll never have a bowl game where it snows - well they do - and it's outdoors! So, although I was thinking that maybe those Miami kids should stay home this bowl season, me thinks that being in Boise versus Miami (in December) is probably punishment (I mean "time out") enough.

Also, the Fiesta Bowl - although I had not "picked" the Broncos (stupid stupid stupid) was a parade of football pageantry - honestly, every play in the book (Knute Rockne's book, that is) - it was great. And good for the Boise State kids - and yes, I too think that they should be able to play OSU (or Florida).

So, there are a few more bowl games; Eagles are in the playoffs; and then it's time to analyze recruiting -

Winning is so much better!