November 2, 2011 |
PAGING ANDY REID. Paging Andy Reid . . . Penn State coach Joe Paterno might not have all that much in common with Reid, the Eagles coach - JoePa is skinnier and his news conference utterances are funnier, if not necessarily more informative - but maybe the most significant difference for purposes of comparison is their records coming off bye weeks. As everyone who watched the Eagles disassemble the Cowboys on Sunday night knows, Reid is 13-0 following a bye. That gives Big Red a significantly higher winning percentage than JoePa, who is 31-15 in such contests, a .674 success rate that is not as good as his overall winning percentage of .732, if you discount the three ties in his 409-136-3 mark.
October 19, 2011 |
NORTHWESTERN is next up on Penn State's schedule, which, if past meetings are any indication, means another journey into the improbable and the historical. No one is suggesting that Penn State-Northwestern is one of the Big Ten Conference's high-visibility rivalries, but the games, much like Halloween, can turn into a haunted-house thrill ride. In 2010, the historic significance was Penn State coach Joe Paterno going for his 400th victory, a highly exclusive club in which he was poised to become the first Football Bowl Subdivision coach to gain admittance, and only the third overall.
October 12, 2011 |
IN PAST YEARS, a Penn State team that had won five of its first six games could reasonably expect a Top 25 ranking in the polls, and maybe even a Top 10 slot if the early victories were impressive enough. But a penchant for low-scoring escapes against unrated opponents have national opinion-makers leery as to how high - or low - the actual ceiling is for the 2011 Nittany Lions. Even after Penn State's excellent defensive performance in last week's 13-3 home victory over Iowa, a program which had produced eight winning efforts in the previous nine meetings in the series, the Lions checked in only at No. 25 in the USA Today coaches' poll.
March 22, 2011
Anthony Stanko acknowledged he liked what he saw of Penn State during a recruiting visit to Beaver Stadium for the Nittany Lions' victory over Michigan last October. When the 6-5, 302-pound offensive lineman from Howland High in Warren, Ohio, made the 3-hour drive with his parents to State College this past Saturday, his good feelings about the place were further confirmed, so much so that he orally committed on the spot. Stanko, rated a three-star recruit by Rivals.com and Scout.com, thus becomes the first member of Penn State's 2012 recruiting class.
December 6, 2010 |
The grumbling among the dissidents in Nittany Nation may persist against Joe Paterno, but they have to agree on one thing: The soon-to-be-84-year-old Penn State head coach has still got it. Although the Nittany Lions finished 7-5 and lost to the two teams - Iowa and Illinois - that tied with them for fourth place in the Big Ten, they received the nod from the Outback Bowl and will take on Florida on Jan. 1 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla....
November 29, 2010 |
Take a look at the Big Ten standings and you'll find that Penn State defeated four teams that finished below it. Take another look and you'll find the Nittany Lions lost to four teams that finished above them or tied with them. That adds up to a 4-4 conference record and a shot at a bowl in Florida, perhaps the Gator on New Year's Day, a date on which Joe Paterno has coached 24 times, compiling a 17-7 record. Bowl bids will be announced Sunday. The Lions finished the regular season at 7-5 after Saturday's 28-22 loss to No. 11 Michigan State at wind-chilled Beaver Stadium.
November 28, 2010 |
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - Penn State teased its fans all season. Sometimes the Nittany Lions showed flashes of greatness. Sometimes they looked as if they didn't belong on the same field with their opponent. It averaged out to a regular-season finish at a level slightly above mediocrity. The Lions played uninspired football for much of a cold, blustery Saturday against Michigan State at Beaver Stadium, atypically hurt themselves with penalties, and fell too far behind to capitalize on a frantic three-touchdown fourth quarter.
November 27, 2010 |
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - Senior Day has enjoyed a long history at Penn State, and the Nittany Lions have been remarkably successful sending those players away from their last game at Beaver Stadium with a smile. The focus this season, however, is a little different. Sure, the Nittany Lions would like their seniors to go out with a win Saturday against Michigan State and at the same time spoil the Spartans' chance at a berth in the Rose Bowl. But most important for the seniors is what the history book will show.
November 25, 2010 |
Stefen Wisniewski doesn't like to waste time, not that he has any time to waste. With all his success on the football field for Penn State, as well as in the classroom and participating in community service activities, Wisniewski has had to make sacrifices that contrast the normal student leisure-time routines of hanging out and playing video games. But if there's one thing about the 6-foot-3, 306-pound senior guard, who will play his final game at Beaver Stadium when the Nittany Lions take on No. 11 Michigan State on Saturday, it's being focused on the task.
November 24, 2010
FOR 18 PENN STATE players, Saturday's Senior Day game against Michigan State will be a bittersweet experience. It will mark the final time they run through the Beaver Stadium tunnel, completing a journey that took some 4 years to complete, 5 years for others. But what of the 83-year-old legend who will accompany them onto the field? Is it also to be the last home contest for Joe Paterno as head coach of the Nittany Lions? Are the 100,000-plus spectators who will be on hand apt to see the curtain dropping on Paterno's 61-year career in Happy Valley, the last 45 of which have come with him in charge of a program he has guided to two national championships, five unbeaten, untied seasons and a Football Bowl Subdivision-record 401 victories?