Actually, they'll be here before we know it - it's that time of the off season when the palpitations kick in when you think about traveling up to State College, tailgating and hearing the Blue Band marching into the stadium for the first time (since blue white) this season. You find yourself clicking on the "driving to Penn State" and/or "PSU game day" playlists on your iPod and getting a little giddy about the opening bars of "Hail to the Lion" and jumping around the house to "Song 2".
And then there's the football. It's like there's an ache in your heart that can only be subsided by the sight and sounds of the game. I was panicking Sunday night because I couldn't find the Hall of Fame game (yes, I realize that it's pre-season NFL - but it's football!) - darn NFL network - I got to see the last quarter anyway.
All the anticipation and hope for the season has been bottling up since the win in the Outback Bowl. The Lions have a lot of talent returning to the team this season - and much of that talent has experience. But I have no idea what to expect from this team - the defense should be solid - but the secondary has had to (still has to) endure a lot of "off the field" distractions this off season and with the shifting of positions and some new men up front - it's going to take some time for the team to get in sync. On offense it's the same questions we seem to have every year - will the qb be able to throw the ball; if he is, will the receivers be able to catch it; will the o-line protect the qb and create lanes for the running game; and, will Austin Scott show up for team meetings?
Bit it's getting close. Soon we will be walking around the State College Wegmans chanting (roughly to the tune of Howdy Doody) "It's Penn State Football time!" (and yes, there is a dance).