Sunday, September 22, 2013

Flash Mobbed

No one will confuse the Kent State Flashes of Kent, OH for an Ohio State, any other Top 25 team, or even a Purdue for that matter (although the Flashes might have a fightin' chance in that one) but that didn't matter to a rain-drenched "crowd of 92,371" Penn State fans who braved the elements to watch the final tune-up game before the Big Ten season.  Penn State prevailed 34-0, in case you haven't checked the scores yet.

Rain not withstanding, it was a wonderful day for football.  The only thing worse than rain is cold rain, so at least we had that going for us.  But it did put a damper on the Blue Out, as fans brought out their red, orange, and camo rain gear.  I was actually surprised at the attendance, even though it was the lowest of the year.  In fact, I had watched part of the Georgia Tech-UNC game, where it was also raining, and the stands were really empty for that one--looked like an average Pitt game on a nice day, if you know what I mean.  So PSU isn't the only school seeing more fans dressed as empty seats in this day and age of economic pressures, high def TVs, and for the lack of a better word, social disintegration.  I mean, when you see a group of five or six people standing around texting on their phones and not interacting with each other, is it any wonder they would choose the comfort of their living room over real social interaction at a football game.  They probably don't get enough bars inside the stadium!

Speaking of bars . . . that reminds me about drinking.  Ok, Mr. Fan--and you know who you are.  You downed your case of Natty Light or Genny--the last one tasted the best, because quite frankly, whatever you were drinking was awful, and at least at the end, your taste buds were too buzzed to notice what the hell you were chugging past them anyway.  Now, you stumble your way to the Port-a-John (an absolute wonder of modern creation deserving of a Nobel Prize if ever there was one).  I can understand where the ambience gets the better of you.  You're best bet is to hold your breath and whiz before you need to inhale again.  But the beer has you out of breath.  You gag.  What can you do?  I understand your dilemma.  I am sympathetic.  What I cannot fathom is why you can't hit the hole with your hurl.  Why do you need to spray the walls and floor?  The hole is not that small.  I'm sure in your drunken state you could screw your girlfriend without missing the hole--this has to be easier.  Oh?  That wasn't your girlfriend?  I stand corrected.  Anyway, thank you very much for sharing with the rest of us.  Congratulations!  You have made an unpleasant bathroom experience just that much more unpleasant.

Ditto for the diarrhea on the seat and floor.  Your mom would be proud.  Moving on . . .which when taken in the context with our Board of Trustees, does seem appropriate for this discussion of crap.

Kent State did their best to keep to the script of scoring first against Penn State this season, but unfortunately, their best wasn't good enough, slicing a thirty yard field goal wide and into the rough.  After getting pounded by the Knight's blend of quarterback perfection and southern speed last week, the Lion's D rose to the occasion and held the Flashes scoreless.  KSU had only 56 yards rushing and 190 total yards in the game.  Kent State became the first team to have a poorer third down conversion percentage than we had.  And despite our up-tempo offense, we managed to win time of possession on the clock.

Akeel Lynch continues to impress me, but Zwinak had a solid day and notched three touchdowns in short yardage situations.  Ficken is Kickin' good!  He nailed a 54 yarder in the closing minutes of the game.  This is tied for the fourth longest-kick in school history with Herb Menhardt in 1979.  The three kicks that were longer were all 55 yarders by Chris Bahr.  Kick it again, Sam!  (he barely missed a 58 yarder last week.)

All in all, Penn State beat an opponent they should have beaten.  The game was never really in doubt.  We still had a slow start, and only led 7-0 after the first, and 14-0 at the half.  The weather was almost surely a factor, and let's be brutally honest here, it's tough to get excited about Kent State.  No offense, flashes.  Hackenberg had perhaps his worst outing of the year, with an INT into double coverage and a lot of just poorly thrown balls.  He lost control of the ball and fumbled again, which was at least recovered by PSU.  I'll blame it on the weather.  I'm okay with that.  He's still a freshman, and this probably won't be the last time he plays in the rain.  But if we make mistakes like that against a team like THEM, we may end up on the Akron or UConn side of the scoreboard.  And let's face it--THEM, Wisconsin and Nebraska are all very winnable games at this point.


From GoPSUsports:

FIRST DOWNS...................927
RUSHES-YARDS (NET)............24-5653-287
PASSING YDS (NET).............134176
Passes Att-Comp-Int...........36-17-136-13-1
Fumble Returns-Yards..........0-00-0
Punt Returns-Yards............1-02-4
Kickoff Returns-Yards.........7-1441-15
Interception Returns-Yards....1--41-2
Punts (Number-Avg)............10-46.55-39.8
Possession Time...............27:1632:44
Third-Down Conversions........3 of 157 of 18
Fourth-Down Conversions.......0 of 02 of 3
Red-Zone Scores-Chances.......0-15-5
Sacks By: Number-Yards........2-163-15

We improved on third down, against arguably weak competition, but don't forget, this percentage was not good against EMU.  So there is some improvement.  (If you are too lazy to look back, we were 1-10 on third downs against EMU.)   Neither team lost a fumble this week although both teams tried twice.  We exchanged INTs.  We're pretty darn good once we get into the red zone, something that Penn State has struggled with the past decade before O'Brien came. 


If Kent only had a brain--Oh wait!  They DO!
The Blue Band did not march.  Really?  The field can stand 300 lb behemoths in cleats, but not a 150 lb (soaking wet) trumpet player in spats?  That field was in immaculate condition.  I could rant about this more, but I already ranted about other crap above.

Penn State won the toss and elected to receive.  Three and out with an illegal procedure penalty thrown in.  Not exactly what we had in mind.  Shock and awe became shucks and aww.

Holy Touching You Touching Me Batman!  THEY PLAYED SWEET CAROLINE!  Bom.  Bom.  Bom.  So good!  So good!  So good!  I was wondering if there was a hostage situation up in the press box!  Seriously, Neil Diamond didn't write the song about child abuse.  Fans singing the song aren't supporting child abuse.  Anyone who links the two is narrow-minded and quite possibly mentally unstable enough to be dangerous.  Even those that hate the song should be happy to see a shift in this politically correct crap that has drowned Penn State from the beginning.  It's only a small step, but at least it's a step forward and not back.

The crowd was listed at over 92,000 (wink, wink.)  The energy level was significantly less compared to last week.  And this week, I had six tickets I couldn't give away.  But don't worry, I've already had plenty of requests for the next game.  I just shake my head.  How can you call yourself a fan if you only go to the "big" games???


The scores are 59-3, 43-24, 24-21, 59-20, 45-28, 41-10, 17-13, 35-21, and 76-0.  Thank you Les Nessman!

76 Buckeyes led the B1G parade.  The Bucks pummeled Florida A and Florida M.  They could have pummeled a few more Florida letters.  The Hawks are coming alive after a typically slow start, beating Western Michigan 59-3.  Nebraska took out last week's frustrating loss to UCLA in a 59-20 thrashing of South Dakota State.  Minnesota is 4-0 after a 43-24 victory over a pesky San Jose State team.  Northwestern beat Maine 35-21.  THEM survived a scare for the second straight week against an "inferior" opponent, beating UConn 24-21 with a fourth quarter field goal.  Don't worry, though, they'll come to Beaver Stadium playing like conquering heroes and chumpions of the west.  (That is not misspelled.)

In the only game between conference teams, Wisconsin bested Purdue 41-10, which adds nothing to one's resumè.

In the losers category, the Spartans fought the Irish and the Irish won, 17-13.  The Hoosiers faced Missouri, and Mizzou won 45-28.  Purdue lost to Wisconsin as already duly noted.

Illinois didn't play, and as I predicted, no one cared.


1.  For Duke:  Putting the FU back in FUN, Pitt scored 58 points . . .just enough to edge Duke who scored 55.  All those points and they didn't cover the spread of 4.
2.  Boise State--lost 41-40 to Fresno State.  Nice defenses.  See also #1.
3.  West By-God Virginia--blanked by the Terps 37 to aught.
4.  Arkansas--Bielema loses to Rutgers 28-24.  Boo hoo, Bret.
5.  Michigan State--any loss to ND is worthy of tears.


Bye Week next week.

Both Indiana and Penn State have bye weeks.  Isn't that convenient?

The Hoosiers are 2-2 and the un-BILL-ievers are worried that PSU can't keep up with the high powered Indiana offense that scored a whopping 28 points against Mizzou.  Anyone can put up 70 on Indiana State, well, except Purdue. 

The Hoosier offense is ranked behind Wisconsin in the Big Ten right now.  PSU is ranked 6th.  But defensively, in the Big Ten, PSU is ranked 4th, while Indiana is ranked 10th.

I'll start worrying if we fall three scores behind.


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