Time for another round of everyone's favorite Wednesday feature, the Blue-White Roundtable. Yours truly serves up the questions this week while Run Up The Score and The Nittany Line are at my mercy to discuss whatever I feel like discussing. If I don't like their answers, well, they tell me to shove it.
Five Penn State players were taken in the NFL draft this weekend. Which player fell into the best situation?
I think Poz landed in the perfect situation. He's on a team committed to winning games run by an experienced football guy in Marv Levy. Their linebacker depth is pretty poor so he'll probably be a starter right off the bat if he can get his contract settled and get in to camp right away. Plus, I think he's a perfect fit for Buffalo. The people of Buffalo are tough. You have to be to live in that cold and snow every year. They're hard working blue collar people, and they like their favorite players to be the same way. He'll fit right in.
Levi has a chance to start early, but he's playing for a traditionally losing franchise. Tony Hunt will probably play right away, but he's going to have to settle for Brian Westbrook's leftovers for a while. Jay Alford is going to have a tough time cracking the depth chart and Tim Shaw will mostly be a special teams player for a while.
Watching Brady Quinn sit through the excruciatingly long first round of the draft was the biggest story of the day. Do you feel sorry for him or did your face hurt from grinning so much by the time the Browns drafted him?
If it were any other guy from any other school I would feel sorry for him. But he's Brady Quinn, and he's from Notre Dame. Unless you are a delusional Domer fan with a serious man-crush, there is nothing to like about the guy. The media crowned him the Heisman winner and first pick of the NFL draft before the 2006 football season ever began. You couldn't pick up a preseason magazine without seeing his mug on it. Every time he laid an egg against a big opponent the Domers praised him for being a competitor. When his draft status started to drop after the combine and his workouts we incessantly heard him and Charlie Weis whine like school girls about what a competitor he was and question how his stock could be dropping when he hasn't played a game for months. On top of that he's got the metrosexual good looks and the so-hot-you-wonder-if-he's-secretly-gay girlfriend. By the time draft day came along I think we were all sick of the Brady Quinn lovefest. Don't get me wrong. I don't wish anything bad on the guy, but I couldn't help but give a little mental fist pump watching him pout in the green room counting the dollars flutter away.
Along the lines of Brady Quinn, now we have to listen to the Bucknuts say they told us so about Ted Ginn Jr. being a top ten pick. Is it possible we're wrong and Ginn will be a great player in the NFL? Or will he rank up there with the greatest first round busts of all time?
Maybe he'll turn out to be a good return man in the NFL, but I can't see him ever being more than a third option receiver. He had some pretty big games on some big stages against Notre Dame and Michigan, but those weren't the best secondaries. Outside of those few games he was quite average. In 2006 he had 59 catches for 781 yards and 9 TD. Good numbers, but not great. Certainly not Calvin Johnson 76 for 1202 yards and 15 TD great. And Johnson had Reggie Ball throwing to him while Ginn had a Heisman trophy winner. Yet only seven spots separated them in the draft? No way.
I'll be sorry to see him go. Penn State certainly had his number. For his three career against Penn State Ginn had 6 catches for 60 yards and 0 TD. Tom Bradley hinted he's also sorry to see Ginn go since he tipped off run or pass on every play.
Apparently some Penn State players were arrested last week or something. Did you hear about this? Some people say the last remnants of the Grand Experiment are fading and Penn State's glory days as a model football program are over. Has Paterno lost control of the program?
I think a case can be made that Paterno has somewhat lost control of the team in recent years. The number of major incidents is definitely up, but I'm not sure if it's due to Paterno not giving enough attention, or if it's Paterno falling out of touch with the modern 19 year old kid. It's probably a little bit of both.
The coaches can only police these kids so much. At some point it's up to your captains and leaders to keep everyone in line. Even then, boys will be boys. College kids drink, and when college guys drink the testosterone starts pumping and they get in fights. It's always has been and always will be that way. Does it reflect poorly on Penn State? Certainly it does. But as I've discussed before, Penn State players have never been choir boys. What makes the Grand Experiment unique is its dedication to academics and civil behavior just as much as playing football and winning. Players who forego the former do not take part in the latter. That has not, and will not, ever fade.
Many people in the message boards are suggesting the District Attorney is on a witch hunt to prosecute a high profile case. From what you've read of the police report, are the players charged to date getting a fair investigation?
I really have to question why Justin King and Jerome Hayes are being charged with anything. Granted they entered the apartment uninvited, but by all accounts these guys were trying to break things up in the apartment and restore order. According to the report they are the only two who signed waivers and cooperated fully with the police. I think we'll see charges against these two dropped. Maybe the DA is bargaining with them to drop the charges in exchange for their testimony against their teammates. Listen to me. I'm just as bad as the message boards.
Is the DA on a witch hunt? I don't know. I think the message board threads are a little crazy on this one. This Friday there will be 37 people called in to testify. Hopefully the truth will come out and this can all be resolved for better or worse.
How did your favorite NFL team do in the Draft?
I've been a huge Denver Broncos fan ever since I saw John Elway orchestrate "The Drive" back in the 80's. Don't ask me how a kid growing up in Central Pennsylvania becomes a Broncos fan. I grew up three hours from Philly and four hours from Pittsburgh, so I never really felt any connection to either of those teams.
When your team only drafts four guys and they are all linemen, it's tough to get excited about it. They took Jarvis Moss, a DE from Florida, with their first pick after trading up a few spots to get him. It's a good pick since they desperately need more pass rush, but Moss has some character issues having been suspended for a game by Urban Meyer last season.
With their next pick I figured they would have addressed some needs at running back, receiver, or linebacker, but they chose to take another defensive end, Tim Crowder from Texas. It's a solid pick, but not a sexy one.
In the third round they took Notre Dame offensive tackle Ryan Harris. A moderate player for a moderate need. I don't have a problem with the pick, but it wasn't a sexy one either. For their fourth round pick the Broncos took another Florida defensive lineman in DT Marcus Thomas. Like Moss, Thomas has some issues having tested positive for drugs multiple times. If he stays clean he could be a great pick. If he doesn't he'll be a great bust.
Denver traded away all their picks in rounds five through seven so that was all they got. Again, four linemen, so it's not a very exciting draft. The needs at linebacker, running back, and wide receiver will have to be addressed in free agency I guess.
Oh the Glory Days
What is your least favorite sport?
Without a doubt figure skating although I refuse to even recognize it as a sport. My mother-in-law and I get in a fight over this every four years when the Olympics roll around. I tell her figure skating isn't a sport and she gets all upset. I thought she was going to throw me out of her house one year.
The NCAA's ban on text messaging recruits: Good thing or bad thing?
Definitely good if you're Joe Paterno. I'll bet a hundred bucks old JoePa doesn't even own a cell phone.
Finish this sentence: Charlie Weis is so fat...
He has to keep dollars in one pocket and euros in the other.
Thank you! Thank you! I'm here all week.