Game Ball and Helmet Stickers: The Big House

Game Ball and Helmet Stickers: The Big House

Ok everyone, off of those ledges and off of those cliffs please. Our Nittany Lions need you down the road. It was ugly. Maybe it was uglier than expected. Then again, what did you really expect? I know, I know, Penn State is supposed to be playing for Rose Bowls and championships. He can’t win the big ones. The team has shriveled into mediocracy. The refs are against us. The sky is falling in front of our eyes. Blah, blah, blah. We heard it all since around the middle of the second quarter of that disaster in the Big House on Saturday. That was about the time it became evident there was going to be no victory celebration for us down-trodden Penn Staters. It coincided with all of those “fire Franklin” commentators and the “keep drinking the kool-aid” crew. Not long into the game, all of the ledge hangers and cliff jumpers began to take position in their usual spots. Welcome to the world of social media after a Penn State loss, such a joyous place (note the sarcasm, in case you haven’t already caught on).

Well, it’s a new week already and it’s safe to come down from the edge, I promise. Penn State got walloped 49-10 but trust me, the world still revolves around the sun and there’s plenty of football left to be played. After reading and watching all the in-depth armchair coaching over the weekend, it all really boils down to this, even if no one wants to admit it: simply put, Penn State got beat by a better team, not to mention it was on their home turf. Nothing more, nothing less. Michigan is at the top of their game and Penn State is just beginning to climb. It’s really just that simple and certainly not worth jumping off the proverbial bridge. In fact, I’ll put my reputation on the line right now and predict that the Nittany Lions will be 4-2 heading into the bye-week and an October 22nd Whiteout with the Buckeyes. Not only that, I predict that to be the infamous “signature win” for James Franklin that everyone so hotly debates. Point to this loss all you want, but I tell you right now, this team will be much further along and benefit greatly from the home field advantage.


Saturday at the Big House is officially behind us. It’s over. It’s ancient history. There’s no point on rehashing what we all saw with our own two eyes. Michigan was ranked #4 for a reason and showed why just as much as we showed why, at the moment, we are so far down that list. In the end, and much as I suspected, we just weren’t ready to walk into that environment on the big stage and pose any kind of threat. The good news is, the Wolverines are as talented and as stiff a competitor that we’re going to see this season, that includes the Buckeyes and Sparty who took a whipping of their own on Saturday at the hands of Wisconsin.

Under the circumstances, there will be no game ball handed out today, nor any helmet stickers; although, I’m half-inclined to give one to "Big Toe" Joe Julius for making that monster tackle on their All-American kick returner. Knowing this team, the little that I do, they would not accept any kind of personal accolades after that kind of performance on Saturday. They expect more of themselves, and more of each other. With that being said, I leave you with this. In 1997, a #4 ranked Nittany Lion team welcomed the Wolverines to Beaver Stadium for a showdown in Happy Valley. Michigan raced out to a commanding 24-0 lead at halftime and never looked back, winning 38-10. It was ugly and embarrassing. There were no sanctions to fall back on, Linebacker U was completely healthy, and yes, a man named Joe prowled the sideline. The same Joe that would go on to win a record 409 victories over the course of his career as we all know. Point is, it happens. Even to the best of them. It happened to us on Saturday in the Big House and I am sure it will happen again at some point. On Sunday morning, the sun rose over Happy Valley, as usual and LaVar Arrington took to twitter preaching patience to a fan base that seems to have none. Today is a new day, the Big House is behind us. There’s a lot of football left to be played and it all starts with a little Gopher hunting this weekend!