Welcome to a special Independence Day edition of the Blue-White Roundtable. Galen has the questions this week, and there isn't a single iota of patriotic flavor to them. So if you want to celebrate our nation's independence, I suggest you go consume large quantities of alcohol, cook some flesh over an open flame, and blow some stuff up.
It appears that ESPN Gameday will be in Happy Valley for the Notre Dame game. Late start against the Irish with ESPN in attendance - will this game rank up there with Ohio State in '05 or am I overhyping it?
I think this game is going to be a little different than past night games. When you think of the great night games at Penn State you think of Nebraska '02, Ohio State '05, and Michigan '06. I think we were underdogs in all of those games which added to they hype because it created a lot of tension before and during the game. Penn State fans were optimistic, but in the back of our minds we knew it was going to be a tough game and nobody would have been surprised if we lost. This year when Notre Dame comes to town we expect to win. Notre Dame is completely rebuilding their offense. We may see a true freshman playing quarterback. Their defense got smoked in the Sugar Bowl against LSU. I think Penn State fans will expect a win of multiple touchdown proportions. For that reason I don't think this game will be as big as the previously mentioned night games. I'm anticipating the Ohio State game will be much more intense. Having said that, I do think we'll break the stadium attendance record for the Notre Dame game.
Serious work alert! Outside of center the offensive line is a bit of a tossup - give me your starting front five for '07.
RT - Dennis Landoldt - He's been getting great reviews in the off season. Joe Paterno recently hinted we have two unknown offensive linemen who are going to do really well this year. He's one of them. Plus Levi Brown said he's going to be good, so that's good enough for me.
RG - Rich Ohrnberger - Everyone says John Shaw is going to move from RT to RG this year and be the starter. Rich started most of the season last year and I thought he did an ok job with the exception of a few key missed blocks and false starts at terrible times. But he was just a sophomore. Shaw didn't show me anything at tackle. Maybe he'll be a better guard, but I would rather stick with the known commodity in this case.
C - A.Q. Shipley - No brainer here. The dude has been starting since he was a freshman and he's easily the best player on the line this year. Plus he knows karate so he'll totally kick your ass. No really, he does.
LG - Lou Eliades - The other unknown offensive lineman Paterno hinted would have a breakout season.
LT - Gerald Cadogen - Cadogen started at LG last year and moves over to LT to replace Levi Brown. Cadogen wasn't very impressive at guard, but he's had another off season to bulk up and they say that tackle is his more natural position. The coaches think he'll be ok so we'll see.
As Mike pointed out there was a bit of a recruiting glitch by Jay Paterno when Ohio running back Mike Shaw's visit was postponed due to... well... incompetence. Is this an isolated event or should we break out the torches and pitch forks and assemble the angry mob?
I think this is a case of a recruit telling the coach they'll come visit at the end of June but never confirming it with the coach down the road. I think this is an isolated event that didn't warrant the "Hang JayPa" reaction we saw in the message boards. Having said that, I can understand the Paterno's wanting to go on vacation, but isn't there someone else who could have accommodated this kid and his family without making them cancel their travel arrangements? We showed Kenneth Page around last week so obviously someone was on campus.
Name an opposing coach that you absolutely hate, someone that makes your skin crawl every time you see him.
Hate is a strong word. There isn't anyone I "hate". Charlie Weis irritates me. It's not so much him as much as the media who portray him as some kind of football genius. Everywhere he goes he's had great players. Now we'll see how he does when he has to recruit his own guys and make them win games.
Let's assume Jay get's a good secretary who keeps track of schedules and Penn State lands Terrelle Pryor: what would they do with him?
I could see him being just like Michael Robinson. With Devlin and Clark he's going to have a tough time starting right away at quarterback, so Penn State would use him as a WR/RB hybrid much like Robinson did in 2002. I could see him doing that for a few years and eventually move to quarterback in his junior or senior year. He would be a great option type quarterback much like Robinson was. I have to wonder if Pryor is going to go for this though. Kids all want to play right away these days, so if he wants to do that at PSU he's going to have to do more than play quarterback to get on the field as a freshman. If his heart is set on playing quarterback and quarterback only he'll probably be a Buckeye.
Would you drop your cable and buy a Dish to get Penn State games via the Big Ten Network if it comes to it?
No. My wife won't let me put a big ugly satellite dish on the side of the house. But for a few years I've been thinking of expanding from basic cable to digital cable. If Comcast offers the Big Ten Channel as part of their expanded digital service it will probably push me over the edge.
Name me one thing necessary for your tailgate - something you can't live without.
Captain Morgan's Spiced Rum. Yummmm...
If I were on death row and had a last meal it would be wings - name me the place I should get those last wings from (editor's note: I lose all respect for you if you don't like wings).