BSD Mailbag 11.19.13

Eric Francis

You've got questions, BSD has answers.

What are your expectations for next season? iamkatemcg
I won't venture a prediction for the win total in 2014 since there will be a long, cold offseason to ponder the team's fate next year. Right now, I expect another slight drop-off in 2014 before things begin to trend upwards in 2015. As long as the team plays hard, improves during the course of the season and doesn't act like a bunch of schmohawks, I'll be happy.

Will attendance start to improve at games? iamkatemcg
Yes, but not next year. This team will be contending soon as long as BO'B stays in Happy Valley. But many fans won't want to spend the time and money on a team that isn't a contender. That's just the way it works.

How long is too long to tailgate? iamkatemcg
As long as you don't miss kickoff, you're fine. If you miss work on Monday because you're still tailgating, then you did something terribly wrong.

Why has BO'B not yet inked a sponsorship deal with Gillette for his chin? iamkatemcg
As soon as Gillette patents a razor capable of properly shaving that impressive chin, he'll be the spokesman.

Have you ever seen such a group of good running backs have such issues with ball security? Biohazard2011
Nope. It's rough because these backs are so talented in their own right, yet there is always the concern they will hand the ball over each time they run the ball. It reminds me of the 2006 season, when Austin Scott was good for a lost fumble per game before being thrown off the team. But this season is much more frustrating since both backs are much more capable than Scott. At least Belton and Zwinak have another offseason to work on ball control. The pair could be in for a monster 2014 campaign with improved ball security.

About the men's basketball team- should we be more excited about how well the offense has played the last two games or more concerned about the defense? psfann
Let's turn this over to basketbro Chad Markulics since he, well, has had the chance to watch the men's basketball team this season:

"Considering how bad the shootyhoopers were at both ends of the floor last season, it's okay to be excited that the offense is firing on all cylinders early. When you can put the ball in the hole the way Pat Chambers' kids have done through three games, you're gonna give yourself a chance to win every night. When you bring up the issues on defense, remember that scoring is up everywhere in college basketball because teams are still adjusting to the enforcement of new hand-check rules. It'll take time, and they probably won't ever be able to stop guys like Adreian Payne and Mitch McGary on the inside, but the defensive rotation issues can and should improve with every game. To answer your question, I would be more excited about the offense because it's already where it needs to be for Penn State to have a shot at the postseason."

Do you think we take enough deep shots down the field considering Robinson is so amazing? Biohazard2011
No. Robinson is the rare receiver who is so good you can just chuck it in his direction and hope for the best. However, I won't blame O'Brien for not doing this more often. They need to produce more manageable downs for their freshman quarterback, and throwing it deep too often will produce too many 3rd-and-longs.

Will McGloin get another start? Biohazard2011
This question was asked prior to Sunday's game, and I would have offered the same answer either way- yes. McGloin's outstanding performance on Sunday did not come as a surprise. I spent a long time doubting McGloin, and have learned from that mistake. I knew that if he got the chance, he would make the most out of it- scholarships/draft pick/combine numbers/contracts/etc. be damned.

However, I do worry a bit about "Backup QB Syndrome," as I like to call it. It's become common in the NFL for an inexperienced backup to come in and light it up for a couple games. Once defenses are able to properly prepare for that quarterback, you never see the same productivity again (think Scott Mitchell, Matt Flynn, and about the last 20 quarterbacks to start for the Cleveland Browns). I don't think this will necessarily happen with McGloin, but something I think about with anyone in his situation.

Which redshirt Junior would most significantly impact the 2014 season if they were to announce on Saturday that they would not return for their final year of eligibility? Aqua Velva Man
Mike Hull. He hasn't turned into the next great Penn State linebacker like many of us were expecting, but I'd like to see what he can do with a full season without any nagging injuries. I think we may see a totally different Hull in 2014. Plus, we can't really afford to lose many linebackers...

Nebraska is a 2.5 point underdog. Do you agree? mook1525
I had to look up the spread because I didn't think there was any way this was true. I'm not that big on Nebraska, but I am surprised considering how poorly Penn State has played in spots this season. They will need to play smart, nearly mistake-free football to prevail on Saturday. Hopefully, an emotional Senior Day crowd will be a huge factor.

What is the most socially acceptable non-primary/non-secondary sexual characteristic fetish? WorldBFat
Only you, WBF. I'll go with foot, since that seems fairly mainstream. I don't understand this, since feet look weird and are often stinky. But whatever consenting adults do in private is none of my damn business.

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