3/29/2007

PSU releases 2007 roster

You can check it out at GoPSUsports.com. PDF file.

Loved him!: Sid Lewis.

Sid Lewis. The memories are fading a bit - but Sid was a favorite due to his "sticktoitiveness" and rapport with silly little giggling girls who asked him for his autograph. Sid is the guy who scored the one touchdown in the waning minutes of the 1983 Kickoff Slaughter (originally promoted as "Classic") - 35 yard pass from Dan Lonergan (or something like that). The PAT attempt was blocked...

But enough about that! More about Sid. What I'll probably always remember the most is how nice he was with the fans - the younger fans in particular. You see, back in the day, before the organized "meet and greets" and "photo and autograph sessions" we youngsters would, during the Blue White Game(s), perch on the railing just behind the team on the East Side of the Stadium. During the game we might get a few signatures and waves, but after the game was "our time." We would wait for the final ticks of the clock and then run on to the field to push paper (I, of course, had an autograph book with a cat on the front) and pen into the faces of our football favorites. Sid was very gracious - and generous with his time - He wasn't the most popular player on the team and he really seemed to be impressed by us kids when we'd get all swoony and excited about the prospect of "meeting" him. Always a nostalgic kid, I was also able to collect 2 arm bands from Sid (different Blue White Games) - complete with grass stains, blood and stink - Cherished (to this day) memorabilia from my favorite team.

3/26/2007

Epee at the Ready

Nothing to do with virtual piddle - Penn State captured its 10th National Championship in Fencing over the weekend.

Joe Paterno press conference regarding Spring Practice

Same old Joe - check out the transcript at GoPSUsports.com.

Bowling for Memories: The Rose Bowl


The Grandaddy of them all - as Keith Jackson would say. The Rose Bowl is the oldest bowl game - and pretty much where the term "bowl" comes from - Penn State's been there twice - once in 1922 and once in 1994...

The 1922 Rose Bowl game (played on January 1, 1923) was not only the Lions' first bowl game, but the first game played in the Rose Bowl (prior to this, the Tournament East-West football game was played at Tournament Park, in Pasadena). The Lions traveled (the whole way) to Pasadena for the game against USC. This in itself amazes me. The game itself, by our standards, was not so amazing. Penn State led at the end of the first quarter, 3 - 0, but proceeded to lose the game 3 - 14. The Lions would amass only 104 yards and 5 first downs against Southern California.

The Lions would not return to Pasadena until their second season in the Big Ten. In 1994, Penn State's atypical offensive fury had resulted in an undefeated regular season. Always at the forefront of college football history, PSU was, once again, shut out of an opportunity to play for the national championship against the #1 ranked Nebraska Cornhuskers, due to the Big Ten's commitment to the Rose Bowl - it had happened to teams before - but this game is a real catalyst to the creation of the (gasp! horrors!) Bowl Championship Series. The Lions were slated to play the Pac Ten Champion Ducks of Oregon - with the knowledge that Nebraska had, the night before, defeated Miami in the Orange Bowl, the Lions took the field. The Ducks played hard, but if anyone had concerns that the Lions would come out flat they were quickly put to ease by Ki-Jana Carter's 83 yard td run. The Lions would only score on the ground, racking up 5 rushing TDs. The final score of the game was 38 - 20 - Oregon had made the game much more "interesting" than most had predicted. It was, of course, a bittersweet victory for Penn State. They were, once again, an undefeated team with no National Championship.

Rose Bowl Logo from tournamentofroses.com

3/22/2007

The Universe is full of squirrels

This has to be the "announceyest" week ever. Stuff going on all over the world; on Capitol HIll; Rene's gone; Elizabeth Edwards is ill, again; and, Butch Davis has cancer.

How did they find it? And abnormal growth in his mouth - non-hodgkins lymphoma - what the heck is going on? We, here at 2theLion, hate lymphoma (non and hodgkins varieties, both). His dentist detected it -

Indiana coach, Terry Hoeppner, who has undergone brain surgery twice, announced he will be skipping spring practice due to heath issues

HT EDSBS beacons of glad tidings.

We wish Old Flick and Coach Hoeppner the best and a speedy recovery.

Loved him!: Duffy Cobbs.

Duffy Cobbs was a red shirt freshman on the Penn State 1982 National Championship Team. He and Ray Isom tore opposing teams' passing games to shreds. He wasn't tall - or big - or lightening fast - but he would hit you into next week if you dared catch the ball near him. Oh, and he was adorable! How could you not be with a name like "Duffy?"

Cobbs played a huge (very much unsung) role in the 1987 Fiesta Bowl Game win over Miami. He contributed to the massive number of turnovers (but then again, who didn't that night?) and was in on some key tackles.

In Tom Callahan's January 12, 1987 article, chronicling the game for Time Magazine, Duffy was quoted, saying:

"Every play," Cobbs said, "it seemed Vinny was staring me right in the eyes. We'd be faking a man-to-man coverage and I'd be saying to myself, 'I hope he believes it, I hope he believes it.' He'd chuckle just before the snap, and we'd all think, 'Good,' and switch to a zone."


We loved him - at the Blue/White games he was always on our list(s) for autographs.

Duffy made an effort to try out for the pros - he was on the New England Patriots' roster in 1987.

Well, there you go...

Rene resigned.

I hate to muddy

the football blog waters with blogspeak regarding Rene Portland, but the Philadelphia Inquirer published an article today regarding Rene's career choices - HT: Left of Centre.

Rene's been there for so long now - I can remember being a "kid" and listening to Lady Lion (back when they were Ladies) basketball games on the radio with my dad (the memory is of sitting in Dad's Fiat in the Westerly Parkway Shopping Center parking lot - not sure why - but that's what it is) - and how disappointing it was BACK THEN that Rene couldn't "win" the bigger games. And yes, I do believe that tournament games boil down to coaching - preparation and game coaching. Things haven't changed and she's had a lot of talent on the team -

Any scandal/actions aside - other coaches (at other schools, of course) would have been held accountable for the poor tournament play.

The Women's Basketball team has had a great following in State College for years. You will (or at least would) see many (mostly) "townies" at the games - sitting of course.

Rene should retire - Penn State won't fire her -

3/19/2007

Bowling for Memories: The Aloha Bowl

So, back to the giant college football book (step-stool) -

I checked out Penn State's bowl games - And I thought I'd take some time and review the games by venue - the (now defunct) Aloha Bowl seemed like a good place to start.

Penn State followed their national championship appearance in the 1983 Sugar Bowl by playing in the 1983 Aloha Bowl on December 26th. Many of the "stars" had left the team - but there were a few stragglers (most notably, Kenny Jackson) - Interestingly, the "kids" who had been redshirt freshmen on the 1982 squad were now playing - these were the kids that would be the heart of the 1985 and 1986 squads (Conlin, Cobbs, etc). DJ Dozier was a bona-fide freshman - and an instant star. Doug Strang was quarterback - that's not a name you forget - he had the difficult task of having to follow Blackledge.

PSU squared off against the Washington Huskies, who boasted a pretty powerful offense (the Huskies would play in the Orange Bowl the next year and beat Oklahoma, the team that would win the NC the next year... but I digress).

The PSU defense shut down the Huskie offense and held them to 10 points. DJ Dozier scored PSU's one touchdown, and the Lions went on to win 13 -10.

The best part is that the PSU player of the game was George Reynolds. George Reynolds was the punter. He booted eight punts during the contest, averaging almost 50 yards a kick (48.6).

It wasn't the "prettiest" Aloha Bowl in history, but it was PSU's one trip to the Big Island - and they won.

3/08/2007

Bumper Stumper

I love the game show "Stump the Schwab" on the ESPN network (currently showing reruns on ESPN Classics). It airs every weekday at 1:00 and 1:30 pm. I regularly take my lunch break at that time, so I can tune in. Generally, I'm awed by the contestants' knowledge of sports trivia and I'm very proud of myself when I can think of an answer - I'd say that I know about 20% of the "trivia" - better at the football and tennis questions - worse at the basketball and baseball. But today I aced a category - it was in the final round, too. It was titled "Linebacker U" - questions about Penn State football. I could hardly contain my glee - and quickly hit the "record" button on the DVR. I got all the questions right - it was awesome.