NO RESPECT! Reading through some of the articles on Rivals, ESPN etc. you would think Penn State is 1-6 rather than 6-1. All of these articles belittle the 6-1 mark due to the lack of quality opponents. None of those articles mention how PSU was in the Bama game and how a call here or a made play could have tightened things up. None of those articles speak to how Bama smoked Arkansas and Florida worse then PSU, yet both of those programs retained their top 25 ranking. It's not just the media either......our own fan base this year (including many posters on this site) was questioning (after the Temple game) if the 2011 Lions would even become bowl eligible this year. To go along with that, there has been a lot of fear raised about the NW game this week, especially with Persa at the helm. Could the Lions lose.....sure.....but given the way the D has been playing along with the special team play of Fera, Powell, Sukay and crew the fanbase should expect to win. Sure the W's are ugly but most importantly they are W's and not L's.
The 2011 Lions are exactly in the position they should be in and likely will be 7-1 heading into a home game with Illinois. This despite an offense that brings back memories of the days when the forward pass was frowned upon. No one likes this kind of O......not the coaches.....certainly not us the fans and definitely not the media. It is in fact one of the big reasons that PSU gets no respect ( that and the media's long-running bias against Paterno led programs - 1968, 1969, 1973, 1986, 1994 - 5 undefeated seasons yet only on NC out of that grouping)! Though we might not like the ugly football that is being played we need to recognize that if this team continues to play tough D and to protect the football, PSU should be in every game the rest of the way out. Not saying we will be favored or even win all of them but given the growing confidence of the team coupled with better OL play and a good kicking game we have a good competitive chance.
Now I am sure this type of talk will lead to the usual Blue Kool-Aid or PSU homer responses......but if you have watched any of the remaining teams on the schedule up to Wisconsin you should like PSU's chances. Illinois, Nebraska and OSU are all very beatable (yes even with our inept passing game). Wisconsin has looked impressive in all their games so far but I think this weekend will give everyone a better gauge as to where the Badgers stand. Even assuming a loss to the Badgers though, will the media still have a total lack of respect for the Lions? Will the fanbase still assail Paterno and continually ponder the date of his ouster and his replacement? My guess is that the answer to both of those questions is yes......and that is sad. I am on the Believe in D train and I want more of you on that train with me! Fire up your grills this weekend.....drink a ton of beer, whiskey, sangria whatever on Saturday and prepare yourselves for a good ole' fashion Defensive whoop down on Saturday night! After all....WE ARE.......LINEBACKER U!