This is the category archive for "Sports".

January 07, 2011

The First Annual PSU Coaching Challenge

(My transportation readers should skip - this is likely of no interest to you).

A little contest: Where will the people below be at the start of the 2011 football season (let's say the date in question is set to August 1, 2011). Multiple options for scoring here; if you just want to identify "here" or "elsewhere", base score is 1 point. Identify which school = 5 points.

Multipliers for more important folks/positions. If you want to just say that somebody's staying, it counts as a pick for PSU (i.e. this is easy money if you're a conservative homer).

Respond in comments for your entry. Entries closed at the end of tomorrow (midnight 1/9/2011).

Example: If you guess "Tom Bradley will be the coach at Purdue" (multiplier = 10) - if you get this right, you get 50 points. If he ended up at Indiana, you get 10 points (1 point for "not at PSU" times multiplier). If he's still at PSU, you get 0 points. "Retired" or "nowhere" counts as a school - so if you guess that Galen Hall will hang it up, and he does, that's a correct pick same as if Bradley goes to Purdue above.

People and multipliers after the jump. Coordinators worth 10 (half coordinators worth 5 each); lesser coaches at my discretion.

Continue reading "The First Annual PSU Coaching Challenge" »

November 05, 2009

Football: Myth destruction

Sports post; political/transportation readers feel free to skip.

Once again, all over the stupider parts of the PSU sports internet, apologists are claiming that the Big Ten schedule is still stronger than what we'd have ended up with had we stayed the course with our old eastern independent pals plus intersectional games, or that Pitt is equivalent to Temple and should thus not warrant a 1-1 long-term deal, or whatnot. A particularly odious thread at BWI included an attempt to talk about the old schedules as "playing Temple and Syracuse every year". This is a really useful way to look at it, as it turns out! Thanks, homer!

Below, you find a table (old school HTML is all I know) comparing the current Sagarin rankings (using his combined rating of the brain-dead BCS formula and the far better predictor) for the teams contained within our 1982 MNC schedule (regarded as quite strong in retrospect), our 1986 MNC schedule (regarded as quite weak at the time and in retrospect), and our current year schedule. Sorted by Sagarin rank, so you can see strength against strength.

What this shows you, in a way, is what this year would have looked like if, instead of being in the Big Ten, we had played the same teams we did in 1982 and 1986.

Continue reading "Football: Myth destruction" »

June 19, 2009

Turn Disgrace into Disgrace-Aid

So my alma mater has scheduled the worst team in 1-AA for a game in 2011. This sucks. But it can be improved. Allow me to share with you the second verse of The Nittany Lion fight song; no, not the idiotic Big Ten one awkwardly added in 1993; the classic one; the one I sung marching to the stadium in uniform every week; the one I sing to my kids today; the one that none of the megahomers at Black Shoe Diaries likely even know.

Follow the links on each line. We clearly can turn some past disgraces on their end, if our primary goal is to schedule pansies. We can also re-establish some classic rivalries with the traditional powers that used to rule football with us back when Paterno was young. Get to it, Tim Curley!

There’s Pittsburgh with its Panther,

and Penn her Red and Blue,

Dartmouth with its Indian (woowoowoowoowoo),

and Yale her Bulldog, too (ruff, ruff).

There’s Princeton with its Tiger (grrrr),

and Cornell with its Bear (BEAR NOISE).

But speaking now of victory,

We’ll get the Lion’s share.

We may need to change the last two lines to something more suitable; like "But speaking now of filling our 110,000 seat stadium without playing road games; We'll get the Curley's Share". Also, we may want to skip Pittsburgh; they may actually win once in a while. But we can work on those details later.

As I told Mr. RUTS, THIS IDEA FREE FOR STEALING. Pay special attention to Yale and Princeton. Those jerks.

January 07, 2009

I have returned

from Florida and am swamped - expect no new activity for a while longer. In the meantime, enjoy this picture (which I was afraid my prone-to-exaggeration memory had misrememberated).

December 11, 2008

Kool-Aid Overload

Dear Kool-Aid drinkers: I, and two others you still tolerate, told you that it was pretty obvious they had picked Clark very early in the preseason and never intended to give Devlin serious snaps. This makes you guys, what, 0-245 by now? And what's the downside, anyways?

Here it is. And the "I told you so" part: You can't expect a top quarterback to stay for another year riding the bench where he wasn't given a serious chance to compete for the starting job last time, and got only ludicrously tiny amounts of mop-up duty. And, what's more important, you can't trust a coaching staff with a 100% solid record of always picking the upperclassman(*) to actually make it a fair competition no matter what they claim they did or are going to do.

Now we get to play next year with no real backup and no real starter on the horizon. Good job, guys.

(* - yeah, they'll make a senior the backup if he's a walk-on or a recruit who would never have started even in the lower conferences. Otherwise, no - the record is incredibly clear).

November 04, 2008

Dear Entire Talk Radio And Internet, Part Deux


No, Ole Miss isn't magically superpowered because they happen to be in the SEC. Here's where Florida stacks up against Penn State so far this year:

Rank (Sagarin PREDICTOR)TeamResult
14GeorgiaFlorida 49, Georgia 10 (Neutral Site)
15Ohio StatePenn State 13, @Ohio State 6

Looks pretty good so far, right? Not so fast. The next entries for Florida:

23LSU@Florida 51, LSU 21
30Ole MissOle Miss 31, @Florida 30

Huh. One thing sure seems to jump out at you, doesn't it? But surely this doesn't show anything, right? Penn State hasn't played anybody that good at home, right? Let's expand that section of the table:

19Oregon State@Penn State 45, Oregon State 14
23LSU@Florida 51, LSU 21
27Illinois@Penn State 38, Illinois 24
30Ole MissOle Miss 31, @Florida 30
39WisconsinPenn State 48, @Wisconsin 7
52TennesseeFlorida 30, @Tennessee 6

Well, I'm sure we'll figure out some new reason why Florida deserves it more. Keep on trucking, internet warriors!

October 27, 2008

Dear Entire Internet And Talk Radio

Penn State isn't Ohio State. Or Michigan, for that matter.

Colors in honor of current #1 and #2. Take that, Aggees!

2007AlamoPenn State 24, Texas A&M 17
2006OutbackPenn State 20, Tennessee 10
2005OrangePenn State 26, Florida State 23 (3 OT)
2002Capital OneAuburn 13, Penn State 9
1999AlamoPenn State 24, Texas A&M 0
1998OutbackPenn State 26, Kentucky 14
1997CitrusFlorida 21, Penn State 6(*)
1996FiestaPenn State 38, Texas 15
1995OutbackPenn State 43, Auburn 14
1994RosePenn State 38, Oregon 20
1993CitrusPenn State 31, Tennessee 13
1992BlockbusterStanford 24, Penn State 3
1991FiestaPenn State 42, Tennessee 17
1990BlockbusterFlorida State 24, Penn State 17
1989HolidayPenn State 50, BYU 39

Bowl record over last 20 years versus SEC: 5-2

Bowl record over last 20 years versus Big XII: 3-0

(* - starting running back and wide receiver suspended for idiotic reasons).

February 14, 2008

Funniest thing I've read in quite some time

From Black Heart Gold Pants:

How Joe Paterno met Fergie, parts 1, 2, and 3.

October 04, 2007

Open letter to Tim Curley

(AD of Penn State)

I bleed blue and white, but I will never have any interest in seeing games against FIU, Buffalo, Temple, Eastern Michigan, Eastern Illinois, and their ilk. Of course, if that wasn't enough, you scheduled a 1-AA team to fill out the slate (Coastal Carolina). Even if I wanted to watch those games, I live in Texas, and I will never have the Big Ten Network, nor will most of the country, where a heck of a lot of your alumni live.

If I don't watch games, I get less enthusiastic about buying PSU stuff.

If I don't watch games, I get less enthusiastic about donating money. It would be hard for me to get less enthusiastic about donating money, but you at least remove the possibility of a head-injury-induced bout of giving later in life.

Sooner or later, when nobody watches these games, ESPN stops putting the bigger games on TV too. Then, even more people buy even less PSU stuff and donate even less money.

This year, and possibly in earlier years, playing games like these, against teams we knew would suck, did nothing to prepare us for the games against teams we thought wouldn't suck. And as a result, we got pantsed. TWICE! Plus, the one out-of-conference game which we thought was against a team which didn't suck ended up being a laugher too. Which argues that scheduling only one game against a team that might not suck is probably not going to help us either, not that you're committing to even _that_ going forward, since our 'marquee' opponent in the next couple years is Syracuse. Yes, Syracuse. And by the next couple of years going forward, I don't mean next year, in which we have three of those cupcakes listed above plus a TBA slot to fill with Temple's name on it. Syracuse is our big opponent to look forward to in 2009 and 2010. Yay!

You often claim that economics dictates these decisions. It's my considered economic opinion that you are quite possibly the dumbest motherfucker in the history of college sports, if you don't think that there will be a negative long-term economic impact to scheduling these kinds of games.

I would much rather watch PSU play a one-and-done away game somewhere like Florida than ever see this type of schedule again. If Joe Paterno is really calling the shots and forcing you to schedule this sort of stuff against your will, as is sometimes alleged, then you owe it to the world to resign immediately. Continuing to assist in the perpetuation of this kind of scheduling is just plain evil.

Your pal,

September 21, 2007

Desperate hope for tomorrow

I hope the game ends up like this:

(image from Autumn Thunder, ironically, a Michigan blog, created in their AppyState aftermath).

If it doesn't, expect me to be even more bilious for the next year. Oh, yes, it's possible.

July 23, 2007

My Stupid School

There are 119 schools in Division 1-A. ESPN has ranked them (well, they've only done the bottom 19 so far). Among the 4 non-conference opponents for my school this year? #117, #118, and #119.


I didn't think this could be any worse than last year. I was rong.

Thanks to RUTS for the find. FUH GUH BUH.

May 04, 2007

This is what is SUPPOSED to happen

From the Centre Daily Times in relation to the fight the homers are trying to pretend didn't mean anything

Sloane said prosecutors had no evidence that King's entry into the West College Avenue apartment was malicious and no evidence that he hurt anyone or damaged anything.

"As a matter of fact, we have evidence to the contrary," Sloane said.

He said King was seen trying to pull people out of the apartment. After the melee ended, Sloane said, King stayed at the scene and tried to apologize to the apartment residents.

A lot of homer idiots keep bringing up the Rashard Casey affair to prove that we shouldn't expect Paterno or the administration to impose any sports-related sanctions on the posse that broke in and beat down. After all, they say, Casey was proven innocent of criminal charges. I draw a very different conclusion here: Casey stood by while his friend beat an off-duty cop into the hospital. He did nothing to stop him; he didn't leave; he just didn't throw any of the punches.

Justin King did what he was supposed to do. This is what Rashard Casey didn't do when his friend beat the living daylights out of an off-duty cop. Promote this kid to captain, pronto.

April 27, 2007

Stupid Homers

My idiotic fellow alumni are spewing trash like this all over message boards in response to these indictments claiming that it's all being blown out of proportion because they're football players.


When I was in college, some guy had sucker-punched me and I had gone after him right away, and the cops caught us fighting, all concerned would indeed have probably just gotten a slap on the wrist.

If, on the other hand, I assembled a posse of a bunch of my friends quite a bit later, went to the guy's dorm room, broke in, and we all started beating people up, many of whom may not even have been involved in the earlier altercation, I'd expect to get thrown out of school for at least a year.

And that's what should happen here. Period. Even if we weren't Penn State, but especially because We Are. Or maybe Just Were.

September 15, 2006

Definition of 'disgrace'

My alma mater is playing a 1-AA team this weekend. I'll be rooting against them. There's never ever ever any excuse for a major 1-A program to schedule 1-AA. A road game (with no return) at Pitt would be better than this. In fact, pick any 1-A team in a part of the country we haven't been to in a while, and schedule a visit. The money's not worth the stain on our record, you retards. And this stuff about needing seven home games to support the other programs is a sham. We'd make more money in the long-run due to the recruiting benefit of playing an away game in one of the parts of the country we don't visit very often. And some year down the road, some other 1-A school would return the favor.

Or, the NCAA could grow a pair and just outlaw 1-A vs. 1-AA games. What's the point of having divisions, otherwise? Should the Astros get to play a real (non-exhibition) game against the Round Rock Express, too?

Simply, absolutely, pathetic.

September 16, 2005

Oh, the humanity

My school's football game isn't going to be on TV. Not even at the sports bar we'd have to drive all the way out to Lakeway for, although we wouldn't have, for such a crappy opponent.

This is the first time in many years that you haven't been able to see a Penn State game, at least on pay-per-view. Sign that the end is nigh? Methinks so.

July 29, 2004

Ricky and Two Weeks Notice

So Mark Hasty wants people to Lay Off Ricky and he makes a lot of very good points. I'm a Dolphins fan if I'm anything (and I'm barely that), and I think the right way to look at it is this:

If you're a professional, the implied contract between you and your employer (and in Texas, especially, it's just implied) is that you'll each give each other a minimum of two weeks notice before changing your employment arrangement.

IE: Your obligation to your employer is to give two weeks notice, and your employers' obligation to you is to pay you for two weeks if and when you are either announcing your departure or getting fired/laid off.

My previous employer does not qualify, by the way; most of the last few people to give any notice were immediately fired! I myself gave a full two weeks' notice and was retained by my boss (VP), and I continued to work, for a week, until the CEO got back into town, and then was told on Monday that the preceding Friday had been my last day. At IBM, when I quit, I was paid for two weeks but was escorted out (true for something like 50-90% of people there). IBM satisfied their implied obligation to me, while my last employer did not.

So I think an analogy could be made to Ricky. Had he given two weeks' notice (from today, let's say), the Dolphins would have had some time to go try to get another running back. I don't think he's wrong for quitting - I think he's wrong for leaving his coworkers in the lurch, just as I would have been wrong for quitting on 0 days notice. (However, the people who quit after me who wised up and gave no notice were correct to do so given the precedent set against myself and others who did give notice after me).

I doubt the Dolphins would have been able to cut him immediately without paying some 'severance'.

There, a non-political non-transportation post. The enb.