9/30/2009

Blue White Roundtable - Penn State vs illini

Kevin from PennStateClips.com furnished the questions this week...

1) The BCS Championship Game dream is dead, but Penn State can still go to the Rose Bowl (at least in theory). What's your best guess about our final record and bowl destination?

Maybe I'm too superstitious for this roundtable stuff - I just don't like to make predictions about players or scores or wins. I grew up in a house where the televisions (and occupants) were routinely "shhed" for jinxing the player, game and/or team. I grew up with countless football rules - about clothing, etiquette, sportsmanship, routine, ritual, and jinxing - I've spent years trying to recover - but the one that really has stuck is the jinxing.

All that said, I think that this upcoming game will be a true measure of what this team is going to do with the rest of the season. It's a new crew of kids - they have to set their own mark on the program - be it good or bad. If they come out of Champaign with a win, I'm hopeful that they will end the season near the top of the conference and the polls.


2) Illinois beat I-AA Illinois state, but sandwiched it with losses to Mizzou (37-9 in St. Louis) and at Ohio State (30-0). They have, by far, the worst pass offense in the Big Ten and their pass defense stinks as well. They put little pressure on the quarterback (1.3 sacks per game) and they do a lousy job in protecting the passer (3.33 sacks per game). In short, the Illini stink. Who rights the ship on Saturday, PSU or Illinois? Discuss.

No one has really said anything about this, but I really think that much of Darryl Clarks woes Saturday night began after the iowa defense got to his head, literally. At the end a designed run play, Clark was hit hard, in the head. I can't help but wonder if it didn't, at least, get him "thinking" - which is one of the worst things a quarterback can do. By the end of the game it was obvious that he was pushing, and being pushed - trying to make something happen. it was a tough loss for everyone - but how Clark reacts will be telling.

illinois is either going to come into this game rabid or defeated - both can be dangerous for a team that isn't prepared.



3) The Nittany Lions are 2-8 this decade in Big Ten openers and 3-6 in Big Ten road openers. (Obviously there's some overlap there.) The two wins in Big Ten openers were during the championship years of 2005 and 2008. What's the problem?

Wow. good question. My guess is that scheduling has much to do with this. Leaving out the dark years, PSU's opening B10 losses have been to iowa, tosu and um. Those 3 tend to beat PSU regardless of where the match up comes on the schedule. I'd say that the problem that needs to be solved isn't so much being ready for the B10 - but being ready to play and defeat the top teams in the conference.



4) Last week's blocked punt for an Iowa touchdown was the turning point in the game. Twice this decade a kickoff return touchdown has been critical in an Illinois victory over Penn State and the way things are going it could happen again Saturday. What's the problem with Penn State's "special" teams? Poor coaching? Lack of a dedicated special teams coach? Not getting our best athletes on the field?

This is always a concern - so years more than others - this year, so far, it's been a big concern - having Stupar (on the sideline) on the starting defense has left a gap in our kick coverage. And they need to find (play) a kid who can kick the ball into the endzone (or at least close) - it's just not acceptable to have returners catching the ball on the 10 with 20 yards of open field in front of them.

On the other hand - I think that Penn State needs to work on their own return game just as much - the coaches don't seem to know who to play. They just need to get better.



Quick Hitters...

The line is Penn State -7. Cover or no? look at me. I'm gonna say yes.

Are you going to the game? no.

True or false: Chief Illiniwek was retired as the Illinois mascot after protests by members by the Illiniwek tribe? False.

Will Chicago be awarded the 2016 Olympics on Friday? my guess is no. But then I thought Paris was a shoe in for 2012.

9/28/2009

More Penn State Football Game Times Announced.



  • October 3rd game at illinois will start at 3:30pm (EST), and will air on ABC.
  • October 10th game against eastern illinois kicks off at 12 noon (EST), and will air on ESPN Classic.
  • October 17th game against minnesota (Homecoming) will start at 3:30pm (EST), and will air on ABC

  • October 31st game at northwestern kicks off at 4:30pm (EST), and will air on the ESPN family of networks

It was an awesome tailgate.

Which helps a little. And that's something.

We had a wonderful time - for our rainy day (all day) tailgate.

This was our 7th annual Oktoberfest - and I have to say - it was some of the best food. Pork and sauerkraut, beer brats with grilled vegetables, kielbasa (polish and tofurky!), homemade mustard, german potato salad, shrimp antepasta salad, peachy Paterno pie, grilled steak, spice cupcakes, becks beer in a can and chardonnay in a box.

9/25/2009

Rainy Day Tailgate Tips Revisited.

Check out our post from last season for some tips for a rainy day tailgate...

Twistin' the Night Away; Lee and Stupar doubtful for iowa game.

So, in his weekly call in show, Coach Paterno relayed that it is "very doubtful" that Sean Lee will be ready to play on Saturday after spraining his knee last week against Temple.

Also, linebacker, Nathan Stupar (STUPAR!) is nursing a sprained ankle.

Of course, star recruit, linebacker, Matt Mauti, is out for the season with a torn ACL.

BUT, it appears that Navarro Bowman will be back to face iowa - he did not play in the first 3 games due to a pre-season injury (groin).  Obviously, he is going to have acclimate pretty quickly.

The team still has a plethora of LB talent on the roster - that is, on paper - hopefully some of these touted kids can prove themselves on the field.


Rainy and chance for delays; Penn State to increase security at football games.

According to a Fox News report, security measures will be heightened at the Penn State iowa game this weekend; a trend that is expected to continue through the remainder of the season.  Officials suggest that you plan for an extra 30 minutes to get into the stadium, and that more thorough searches will be conducted.

This announcement comes on the heels of the new "no bag" policy at michigan stadium.

9/24/2009

Roundtable Round up; poke 'em in the hawkeyes edition.

Thanks to Devon at Nittany White Out for his compilation of this week's Blue White Roundtable.

Here comes the rain again; Penn State v iowa Tailgating


The weather forecast has been updated, and not for the good - it appears that it will be a rainy afternoon on Saturday - but it won't dampen our spirits - bring some extra clothes/gear - I recommend rain jackets/ponchos for the tailgate and the oh so fashionable rain suit for the game.

If you don't have white or clear rain gear for the game, bring some kitchen trash bags - they were all the rage at Fashion Week in Milan.

The temperature is expected to hover around the high 50s - so it won't be frigid - but wear layers, okay?


I blame iowa.

The Road to the Whitehouse 2009; PENN STATE v iowa!

Are you ready to tailgate? Are you ready for Oktoberfest 2009?

Penn State hits the field this weekend against the iowa hawkeyes in their one night game of the season. Kick off is at 8pm (EST) and the word is out to friend and foe alike that we'll be turning Beaver Stadium into the WHITEHOUSE! (ie, we're not allowed to use the term that reminds us of a snow storm) The hawkeyes wear gold (yellow) and black - no Steeler garb this week friends, and be mindful of your jewelry and shoe choices.

The ESPN Game Day crew will be broadcasting from Beaver Stadium - coverage begins at 10am - and the game will be shown on ABC. The current forecast is cloudy with a chance of rain in the evening.

We will be tailgating, all day long. Lots open at 8am - our current plan is to get to the stadium between 9-10am. But don't worry, it's okay, sit down, because we know exactly where we'll be parking - in the PINK lots*, next to the North end of the stadium (the Park Ave side). Please email or call for exact directions - and/or keep a look out for our PSU and Bavarain (blue and white checkered) flags!

We'll be serving some of our favorite German cuisine - including (but not limited to) beer brats, pork and sauerkraut, pierogies, kielbasa (remember, part of Poland used to be Germany), German potatoes, spice cake, and much, much more.

All are welcome! We'll have plenty of food, but if there is a particular food item or beverage** that you just have to have, please bring it along.



*be aware that we have purchased these passes from a third party (we haven't sold out, again, yet) - and we have every hope that they are legitimate passes - if we have any problems with the spots we will do our best to get in contact with you. Our alternative location will be lots 12-13.
**no glass bottles in grass lots still applies to Pink parking.

9/23/2009

JORDAN NORWOOD IS AN EAGLE!!!

According to his Twitter account - Jordan Norwood is now a Philadelphia Eagle.

Here's hoping he finds success in the City of Brotherly Love.

We'll be rooting for him!!!!

9/22/2009

The First, Inaugural, Official 2theLion Blue & White Roundtable.

Cue the trumpet fanfare...



We've been pirating the Roundtable questions for years... I remember when RUTS used to suggest that they didn't need a round table, as there were only 3 of them... and now we're an official contributor (although we were sent the questions in an "oops, I think you were forgotten/purposefully omitted" email)!!!

The questions this week are authored by Devon at Nittany Whiteout.

So, here we go...

1. As this week's matchup with Iowa represents not just Penn State's first conference game, but their first real test, take a look back at the 3-game preconference schedule. What was the one thing that stood out to you most, either as a success or a failure?


Ack. Well, I had thought that the passing game looked a little better than I had expected, before the Temple game, and I had been really, seriously, concerned about the running game, before the Temple game. It appears that our inexperienced offensive line can only focus on one aspect of the game at a time. Wisniewski needs more experience at center - there are still some exchange concerns. Not a failure - or a success - but a work in progress.

2. Iowa, on the other hand, has been tested twice already this season, both by D1-AA Northern Iowa and by Arizona, a solid Pac-10 team. How much of an advantage, if any, will the Hawkeyes have over Penn State as a result?


Iowa is going to have some confidence coming into this game, both from their own play and, most likely, from watching the PSU film.

3. It seems like both Penn State and Iowa have been hit pretty hard by the injury bug early in the 2009 season, with Iowa losing the services of RB Jewel Hampton, LT Bryan Bulaga, TE Tony Moeaki and WR Darrell Johnson-Koulianos and Penn State potentially without both Sean Lee and Navorro Bowman, along with Graham Zug. How will both teams adjust to playing without some of their star players?


Penn State has had some key injuries this year - I'm hopeful that Lee, Bowman and the Zug will be able to heal quickly and return to the field soon - but we also have had some more serious injuries in the off season that have shallowed our depth chart - such as Mike Mauti and Darryll Clark's brain.

That said, I do feel, if Clark stays healthy, Penn State has the talent and the drive to fill the gaps and get the job done.

FWiW, it's been reported on Twitter this morning that Bowman is back in practice - Lee is not.

4. Last year, a loss to Iowa knocked Penn State out of the championship race. This year, they're in a similar place, as they largely control their own destiny. Do you see Penn State running the table in the Big Ten, and if not, where is the most likely slip-up?


I think it's a little early to say that PSU controls its own destiny - there are still teams ahead of PSU in the polls and 9 games to play. Penn State needs to win on Saturday - every Saturday - and then teams in front of them need to lose as do the teams (currently) ranked below them.

I think that this team, given the schedule has a very good chance of winning a lot of football games - but the players and the coaches can't just sail through the season - they have to work for it - they are the defending Big 10 Champions and everyone is going to be ready for them.

5. This will be the fourth year that Beaver Stadium hosts a White Out, and it's universally regarded as one of the best traditions in the NCAA. What suggestions would you have to further improve gameday conditions at the Beav?


Move the Blue Band back to the south end zone - we can't hear them in the East stands. Other than that I'd cut back on the canned and reactionary music. We don't have to hear Song 2 or Kernkraft 400 after every play - especially against teams such as temple. I love the enthusiasm - but let's not waste it.


Lightning Round:

Who runs for more yards, Iowa or Penn State?

Penn State

Last year's Whiteout game drew 109,626 people to Beaver Stadium. How many come this year?

107,982

If you had to win just one of the two, would you rather Penn State beats Iowa or Ohio State?

Luckily for me I don't get or have to make these choices - I'll just say that I'd rather the Lions win one rather than none.

Does Corso put on the Lion or Hawkeye head?

Good question. hawkeye?

Does Penn State get revenge, or does Iowa make it 7 of 8 against the Lions?

I know that the notion of "revenge" can be motivating, but I hope that the Penn State players focus on the game, and win it.

9/21/2009

Rally in the Valley and College Game Day visit the Whitehouse; Penn State v iowa.

As I'm sure you know, Penn State hosts iowa this Saturday (Sept. 26th), and it is a scheduled "Whitehouse" (that is, all fans are encouraged to wear white.

On Friday night (8pm), join PSU Athletics and the Blue White Society for a pep Rally in the Valley in Rec Hall.

On Saturday, the ESPN College Game Day crew will be broadcasting from Beaver Stadium. Coverage begins at 10am.

PENN STATE at illinois game time set.

According to the internets (okay, a non link supported Tweet), the Penn State game at illinois (Saturday, October 3rd) is scheduled to kickoff at 3:30pm (EST) and will be televised on ABC/ESPN.

Mark your calendars accordingly.

9/18/2009

The Oldies but Goodies; Penn State vs Temple redux

Perhaps because I'm busy - perhaps because they're timeless - please enjoy some PSU v temple posts from the past...


From Thursday, September 18, 2008...

In honor of our upcoming game against Temple - enjoy these bits from Bill Cosby...







From: I Started Out as a Child (1964)

Dad had the LP - and we used to listen to it all the time - some of the best comedy ever.

Video (ie audio) Source: YouTube

Inspiration Source: RUTS

Tuesday, November 6, 2007...

Okay - so we're going to be tailgating at the PSU / Temple game this weekend.

While PSU is my (heart) team, I am a Temple fan and alum - I got my JD from Temple - way back when.

We have an old favorite drink - The Cherry and the White - we taste tested it this weekend...

The Cherry and the White

1 - 2 oz Vanilla Vodka
Cherry Cola
Cherry garnish



Add Vodka to Navy Blue Solo cup -

Fill with cherry cola, stir,
and enjoy!


9/15/2009

PENN STATE v Temple; Blue Hawaii Luau Tailgate


Aloha!  It's a Rockin' Lion Luau!

Al Golden and the Temple Owls travel west for their second game of the season. The Owls, who sport uniforms of cherry (red) and white, have had a week to recover from their (somewhat) surprising loss to Villanova - as always, the Lions need to be ready for game day and never underestimate an opponent.

University wide - it's "wear your favorite jersey day!"  

The current forecast is "mostly sunny" with a high of 70.

Gametime is 12pm - and the game is televised on the Big Ten Network.

To celebrate our 50th State's (Hawaii) 50th year of Statehood - we're having a Blue Hawaii tailgate.  We'll have some cured meats, pineapples, coconuts, and maybe even some grilled spam!  

The early kickoff means that the parking lots will open at 7am and we'll be there when they unlock the gates to Lot 13. Be on the look out for our Fleur de Lis (Quebec Flag - and no, it doesn't really have anything to do with Hawaii) and Penn State Flags.  Email or RSVP on Facebook if you need further contact information.  

We'll be tailgating before and after the game - as always, all are welcome. Contributions are appreciated but not necessary. Check back here for any last minute details/information.

To the Lion!

Okay, it was a crazy week; return of the pirated Blue White Roundtable

So last week was filled with a lot of "away from the keyboard" matters - such as work and life and so on - but we're back and we're getting ready for this week's game against the Temple Owls.

To get the ball rolling I thought it was fitting to renew my tradition of posting some "unauthorized" answers to the weekly Blue and White Roundtable. This week's questions are from The Nittany Line:

-Temple lost over half of their offensive line and their starting QB from a team that didn't have much of an offense anyway (107th in total offense in the country) do they have a realistic shot at moving the ball against Penn State's defense?
So far Penn State's defense has looked pretty tough when they are able to pressure the quarterback - when plays do break through the line the LB's and secondary have been pretty good at the open field tackle. Lee seems to be back to full speed+ and Hull seems to have taken some sort of agility/quickness potion during the off season (perhaps he draws strength from the wicked new mustache). But our pass coverage game is still a question mark and if we're honest, we really have no idea how our team will stack up against a top (or 2nd, or 3rd) tier program.

-Homework time! You'll have to dig deep and be creative for this one: name something about this Temple team that scares you (ok scare may be a bit much… how about gives you pause).
Temple's QB, Vaughn Charlton (do the dance) is the kid who ran and passed (somewhat at will) between the 20s on our 2007 defense. Yes, he threw 3 interceptions against 'Nova in the Owls' first game, but he also threw 2 TDs (one for 75 yards) and 317 yards. Do I think that Temple's offensive line will hold up? no. Do I think our secondary needs to be better and that there will be moments during the game where i yell "get him!"? yes.

-Temple lost to Villanova in week one on the last play of the game. If you'll remember that also happened to Temple twice last season: bad luck or bad coaching?
Meh. The games last season were heartbreakers, hard fought even(ish) battles where officiating and fluke plays ruled the outcome. There was definitely some "luck" involved in those outings. Against Villanova, Temple was up by 10 in the 4th quarter (wait. are we talking about the Bills?) - That's coaching - whether it's play/scheme calling, conditioning or even mental attitude - it's coaching.

Quick Hits

-True or False: Penn State holds Temple under 200 yards of total offense?
False

-True or False: Temple goes bowling this season?
False

-On a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being "totally sucked" and 10 being "awesomeness of epic levels" – how did the Michigan victory over Chuck Weis make you feel last week? Be honest!
5 - good for the big ten, bad for weis and clausen - but still michigan.


So, there you go - our first poached roundtable of the season - mmm, tastes good with a little lemon and dill.

9/04/2009

Football Friday Fan Fare; Penn State Tailgating!



We'll be heading out to State College later today for the first game (and tailgate) of the 2009 football season. The 12pm start time, and warm weather, pose some challenges for tailgaters - but we're rested and ready. Here's an easy, and nicely "storable" recipe for Greek Taboule Salad. It can (should) be made ahead and can be served chilled or room (cow pasture) temperature; you can store it in your cooler and serve it before or after the game.

This week, we'll be serving the salad along with grilled chicken club sandwiches.

1 package Near East Taboule (as this is basically the recipe right off of the back of the package)
1 C boiling water
2 T olive oil
1 C crumbled feta cheese
1 tomato, chopped (or grape tomatoes, halved)
1/4 C fresh basil, chopped
2 T lemon juice (or more)

*** you can add blanched broccoli florets, artichoke hearts, etc - we (ie, Suz) added chopped english cucumber.

1. Prepare the taboule. Combine taboule with spice packet (included) in a large bowl. Stir in 1 cup boiling water and 2 T olive oil. Let stand for 30 minutes.
2. Stir in cheese, tomato, basil (any add ins) and lemon juice. Chill at least 2 hours (driving time!)
3. Serve with black pepper and/or lemon wedges.

How Tweet it is; Where to Watch the Lions!

Penn State's season opener against akron will be televised on the Big Ten Network (12pm EST) - but, if you're out and about, check out this tweet for some watering hole/football watching venues....

PSUgirl RT: @tinahay This is about the coolest thing: A map showing bars in the U.S. that carry PSU football games: http://bit.ly/7hVJp #pennstate

9/02/2009

I Miss Deon Butler; Only 3 Days until Penn State Football.



We have just a scant 72 hours before the 2009 Penn State Football Season begins and only 67 before the 2009 Tailgating season starts.

Penn State is hosting the Akron Zips this weekend. The "Zip" is embodied by a Kangaroo, but then, you already knew that. Akron sports uniforms of Blue and Old Gold - choose your game day garb accordingly. There will be no hurricane this year (see 2006), in fact, the weather is supposed to be just about perfect.

Gametime is 12pm - The early kickoff means that the parking lots will open at 7am and we'll be there when they unlock the gate. A limited number of tickets to the game are available - Visit GoPSUsports.com for details.

As usual, we'll be there, in Lot 13 (we hope), bright and early and ready to get things started. We have a few new gadgets and flair that was obtained during the summer - so keep a look-out for our fancy new flag pole (This week we will be flying our Penn State flag along with the flag of Scotland). Email for directions and/or cell phone numbers if you need them. Click here for the parking map pdf.

Our theme this week is "2 the Lion Clubhouse." We'll be serving (you guessed it!) club sandwiches and sipping Arnold Palmers.

We'll be tailgating before and after the game - as always, all are welcome. Contributions are appreciated but not necessary. Check back here for any last minute details/information.

To the Lion!