Our friend Janelle checks in with a unique perspective on the school in Happy Valley.
I hate Penn State.
No, really, I loathe Penn State.
Now, when I tell people this these days, I’ll get responses telling me to have a heart and to have some sympathy for what they’ve been going through the past nine months.
They don’t realize that I grew up in Penn State territory, about an hour and a half away from State College. My dad is a Penn State fan. My grandparents are Penn State fans. My brother and sister-in-law are Penn State alumni. My mom and I are the lone ones that wear scarlet and gray in a sea of blue and white on football Saturdays in the fall.
As a kid, my dad used to take me to Penn State games to try to convince me to become part of “Nittany Nation.” It never worked. I was destined to be part of Buckeye Nation from day one. But I never imagined I would end up hating Penn State like I do.
Recently, I’ve spent time trying to find out where exactly my hatred for the Nittany Lions comes from.
It isn’t their players (although players like Moxie McGloin add fuel to the fire). It isn’t the school itself (I mean, it’s a school in the middle of nowhere…and since I go to Ohio State, The Best D&%# School in the Land, all I can do is feel sorry for students who end up in Happy Valley and not in Columbus). Up until recently, it wasn’t the coaching staff (although, even before this Sandusky scandal, I was never a Joe Paterno “fan”…as the rest of the world is finally starting to see, he was held in an almost god-like light by his supporters, and had way too much power over an entire town and even state). It’s not the new coaching staff.
No, my hatred comes from Penn State’s fans. It honestly has to be one of the worst fan bases in the entire country. Read More
On Tuesday, I was impressed by Danny from 11W posting his “OHIO” photo from the top of Mt. Baker, for a couple of reasons. First, I’ve lived in WA and skied at Baker all the time. Second, I was hoping to have a similar photo from the top of Mt. Whitney under my belt by the end of this summer, but a couple of family issues prevented me from enhancing the highest peak in the continental US in such a glorious way. Finally, I love shots of the outdoors, and just got back from a week long trek as well- the photo on the right is much lower than Danny’s, but includes at least one Michigan fan. Always good to spread the gospel, right?
It’s good to be back… right before the team goes camping as well. And here… we… go…
The quiet of this week around Buckeye Nation provides a moment of peace prior to August’s chaos of fall camp and Olympic dreams. It’s completely different than July of 2011… and I don’t hear many complaining.
What I do hear, though, are the thunder and raging winds still swirling from last week’s Freeh Report. Both the national news coverage and the responses from Lion Faithful and PSU alums are clamoring- and, like what passes for dialogue these days, neither side are really listening to the other. Civility seems to be yet another casualty of this situation- although, it can be argued that this merely highlights the fact that it’s been dead for a long while.
So, this week’s SBP will take a look at some of the interesting articles and reflections on this almost indescribable set of circumstances. The view we’ll be taking will be a bit farther out- looking not at the particulars but at the “culture” that’s seems to have been on everyone’s mind lately… although, I’m not sure we’re looking deep enough.
If you’re tired of this story, I hope you’ll at least stick around for the commentary after the jump- there’s a lot to learn and think about from this, even if you’re not Nittany.
Responses to the Freeh Report
Everything about the crimes and the cover up is horrific, so please keep that in mind while you are celebrating Penn State’s coming reckoning. When you pop the champagne tonight in jubilation, try to remember that children were raped and grown men in charge of leading young men allowed it to happen. Then try to think of any reason why a human being should ever be happy that this could happen to a child, let alone children.
Don’t let football blind you, because that’s what Penn State did. They willingly let themselves lose sight of of what actually happened to these children, and then somehow found a way to ignore it. Hate Penn State for what happened here all you want, but don’t forget why you feel the way you do. And it should have nothing to do with football.
The Greggster must have gotten what he was looking for, because his next comments on the matter were… get this.. a complete change in tone that went against what others were saying. Read More
This morning, the report from the independent investigation into the culture at Penn State University was released by the committee led by former FBI director Louis Freeh
The investigation, commissioned by the PSU Board of Trusteees sought to examine the circumstances which led to the instances of child abuse that former coach Jerry Sandusky has been found responsible for. Those instances, as you may remember, happened during his tenure as PSU assistant coach and also in some of the PSU facilities following his resignation.
Among the concerns following the initial investigation into Sandusky’s actions were how much of these situations were known to PSU staff, and how reports of child abuse were handled by football administration and others at the university. Over the past few weeks, it has become apparent that the report and investigation by Freeh’s group would focus also on on the campus climate and culture surrounding the University’s football program; for instance, recent articles have indicated that there may have been a disconnect between the University’s protocols for student accountability and how violations by members of the football program were handled.
Many were concerned that today’s report would either “blow the lid off” the legacy of former head coach Joe Paterno, or would unfairly tarnish the work that he accomplished over his tenure. There are also concerns that the NCAA may examine the findings of the Freeh report for possible lack of institutional control. This would be in addition to the Pennsylvania State Attorney General’s Office, the Department of Education, and the FBI being invested in the findings of this investigation, particularly for former president Spanier, former VP Schultz and former AD Curley
In addition to looking at the foundations for any problems that may exist, the comissioned report makes some recommendations for how the athletic department and the University might move forward from the tragic past few months.
The full report can be read at TheFreehReportOnPSU.com and is available in it’s entirety here as well. Judge Freeh will be hosting a press conference later this morning to answer concerns and questions about both the group’s process, findings, and recommendations.
We’ll be bringing you further commentary and reflection on the Freeh report as the week progresses, but here are some initial observations.
Four of the most powerful people at The Pennsylvania State University… failed to protect against a child sexual predator harming children for over a decade. These men concealed Sandusky’s activities from the Board of Trustees, the University community and authorities. Read More
It was a memorable Senior Day in Columbus, although not the memories that Buckeye fans were hoping for. Ohio State’s offense continued to struggle against a solid PSU defense, and the Buckeye D were unable to effectively stop the big plays as Penn State moved to a Wildcat package to have success running the ball.
After returning from his 10 game suspension, Devier Posey received a warm welcome at his introduction during the Senior celebration; there was speculation that the fans might not have responded well to the last member of the Tat 5. His presence helped in the game, but in the end it wasn’t enough.
Ohio State deferred to the second half, and PSU started on the OSU 20 after a huge kick. However, on the first play, Howard committed pass interference after biting on the play action. OSU’s D managed to shut out the Lions on first and second down, but gave up a slant for the first. PSU went to the wildcat, with Drake taking the snap and handing off to Green; who burst up the middle (and past Ryan Shazier) and ran 39 yards for the early PSU touchdown.
Ohio State’s Offense started with a run up the middle. Surprise, right? Miller took a sack on second down, and completed a pass to DeVier on a broken play. A pass to Herron on first down fell incomplete, but Miller’s keeper on the option look picked up eight yards; Boom picked up the first down off tackle. Boom was tripped up after a three yard gain on first down, but picked up nothing on the second. A fumbled snap on third down, and Buchanan came out and punted into the endzone.
This guest post from our friend Daddy Big Bucks was originally posted on Buckeye Planet during the week that the Penn State story was developing and as the Buckeyes were preparing for Purdue. However, given this Saturday’s game, the sentiment is still incredibly appropriate.
To All Ohio State Fans, especially those going to the game this Saturday:
Some have observed that, given their reputation, Wisconsin fans will be merciless toward Penn State and their fans on the final Saturday of the regular season. I do not doubt this. The person posting it did not act as if they were going out on a limb. They were simply stating something that we all accept as fact.
And, given the circumstances swirling in Happy Valley, it’s within consideration to assume that this might actually get worse. Some would even say “deservedly so”, remembering road games in Beaver Stadium from past seasons. But I think this is a mistake.
Whether it was during Saturday’s telecast of the Nebraska contest or during replays of the riot that occurred when Paterno was dismissed; our ears will, no doubt, are assaulted with the 2nd most annoying chant in all of college football. When you hear it; I implore you to hear something else. While they lay proud claim to who they are, let it remind you of who we are not. Our cheer this weekend is, “We Are – Not Them!”.
No, I am not saying that we are not Penn State. While this is true, and while we can be grateful for it, it is not where our focus should be. The point of all this is, “We Are – NOT WISCONSIN!”.
We are not drunken, bottle-throwing fools who delight in other peoples’ misfortune and publicly disgrace ourselves. We are not classless simpletons who parade classless banners before television cameras, bringing shame on our university. We are not them, Columbus is not Madison, The Ohio State University is not Wisconsin. Read More
There ain’t no thunderstorm bright enough, ain’t no rain storm long enough, ain’t no computer smart enough –to keep me from helping you weaklings! Week 1 is in the books, and though I finished sub .500 in the first week of our picks, I am spry and ready to prove that Week two is my week!
Okay, so finishing 4-5 wasn’t so bad in our first round of games. Considering TCU was a lock ( son of a). Notre Dame never loses in week one right?? (Fight this Irish) I thought Ducks fly together? I guess not when you spread em’ out in Dallas.
Breakdown of Week 1:
So just how ugly was it in the very first analysis for our panel? If your name starts with an E and ends with @tBBC then you’re smilin’ this week. If you’re the dope that writes this article, then you are just happy you tied the computer! Apparently anyone named Joe is a week 1 WEAKLING. Here is a look at this week’s results.
Experts (David Fox/Yahoo!): 7-2
Joe D: 4-5
Joe L 3-6
Props going to David Fox, for boldly picking Baylor over the favored Horned Frogs. He said it in the interview, this defense has a lot of work to do. Fox’s only lost came from Notre Dame and Oregon.
Eric went toe-for-toe, but chose TCU instead of Baylor. Let’s just say he has been wishing bad things upon the Bears all week. Don’t worry Eric, the whole panel was. The Bulls and Bears swept the panel in week 1. Eric says this is a true sign from the football gods that TCU belongs in the Big East.
And well, with the Irish, we are used to this by now aren’t we?
The panel got back on track with sweep wins by selecting Oklahoma over Tulsa and Mizzou over Miami (OH).
Week Two Analysis:
Speaking of those Wacos, this week’s guest writer Lisa Horne of Fox Sports.com and I discuss Big Ten and SEC expansion and the Big 12′s role in it to open things up. Lisa then helps us break down Michigan/ND (EWW), Arizona State/Missouri, Auburn/Mississippi State and Wisconsin/Oregon State with us. A very solid interview with Lisa, as she brings us her great football knowledge. And yes, she chose Michigan, but what else was she supposed to do? Take Notre Dame?
Now it’s time to get to the Games!