It was the perfect, State College way to close up Beaver Stadium for the season, wasn’t it? Snow squalls, freezing temperatures, and howling winds are part of classic Penn State vs. Michigan State weather; I do miss when we ended our season with the Land Grant Trophy match up. I’m not the biggest fan of the Leaders/Legends divisions and I’m not unhappy that we don’t see Nebraska again for a few years. Lately, it seems they’ve had our number.
“No” is also the thought that starts to plague me at this point in the season as I mentally try to slam on the brakes of time. Nooo there’s only one. more. game.
All that looking on the bright side of not having to worry about becoming bowl eligible is out the window. What’s left is one more game and then the abyss of winter. (And God bless ya if you have to endure the season in Happy Valley, where snow is in the air from October through April!) One more game and then we get stuck watching somebody else in a bowl game that should’ve been ours.
If you see a senior player this week, give him a big smile. That was a tough way to end Senior Day. I’m finding it a little tougher to let these seniors go. They proved they are Penn State down to their cores and I feel a little bit bonded to them after the last two years. Kyle Baublitz, Kevin Blanchard, Alex Butterworth, Glenn Carson, Bryan Davie, Brandon Felder, Garry Gilliam, Adam Gress, Ty Howle, DaQuan Jones, Alex Kenney, Matt Lehman, Stephen Obeng-Agyapong, Eric Shrive, John Urschel, Malcolm Willis, and Pat Zerbe chose to remain true to our white and blue; this fact cannot be overstated. Did you know Urschel actually thanked the media for their coverage of Penn State? That just goes to show the type of character we have in these players. He’s a bigger person than I.
On the Disney building in Burbank, the seven dwarfs are carved into the architecture, symbolic of the animated movie’s role in bolstering the Disney Company. In the future, when I look back on these challenging days in our history, I will image these seniors as part of a quietly heroic group of players holding up walls of our stadium, making sure the roof didn’t cave in on us all. They know and we know that it would have been easier for them to walk away. Because they helped hold us together and because we’re saddled with this NCAA burden, it’s all the more difficult to watch the season coming to an end.
Many people must be sharing my end-of-season dread since I noticed a resurgence of misdirected anger toward a certain kicker. It makes me want to rehash what I’ve already blogged about sportsmanship but I’ll spare you my soapbox and say this:
Let’s get focused, people. We need to pump up that positive energy. Conjure up just a bit more magic. Go through those pre-game rituals one more time.
We’ve got one more game and we better enjoy the living daylights out of it because September 2014 feels like its forever away.