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Nitt Picks Works The Weekend Shift

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Yesterday was the annual Lift For Life at Penn State where the football players compete against each to raise money for kidney cancer research. has a nice writeup on the Lift For Life if you're interested in learning how it came about. PennLive also has a nice collection of pictures you can see from the event. Let's just say Jack Crawford looks as mean as ever.

One of the cool things about the Lift For Life is that it allows the media access to the players for a bit to ask some questions, and this provides some new stories for those of us scraping the bottom of the barrel for anything we can find in these dog days of summer. Or, we could just talk about the quarterback situation some more. Jay Paterno says things are still wide open.

Jay Paterno, though, isn't giving into preconceived notions. The only timetable to name a starter is by the season opener Sept. 4 against Youngstown State.

"Everybody wants to make certain assumptions about it. I haven't made any, really," he said. "We haven't given anybody an edge."


But in another article, Jay Paterno says he's not worried about their situation.

"We’ve had some competitions in the past where we haven’t had this much talent, and you end up trying to make chicken salad out of chicken you-know-what," Paterno, PSU’s quarterbacks coach, said earlier this week.

"This is a good field," he added. "You know, when I was in college [at Penn State] and I was on the dating scene, there were a lot of contenders but not a lot of talent.

"With this quarterback competition, there are a lot of contenders and all of them are talented."

Interestingly, Kevin Newsome did not participate in the event yesterday. The first article I linked said it was due to a "family obligation". I don't want to be stirring up controversy, but shouldn't a guy that is in a dog fight for the starting quarterback job be on campus working out with his teammates? Especially in a high profile event like this where this is an opportunity to bond with your teammates for a good cause? Could this be an indication of a lack of leadership and commitment? Or is it no big deal?

We all know Penn State has to replace all three starting linebackers from last year. On any other team this would be a huge red flag. Most teams can replace one guy pretty easily. Some can replace two. How many can replace three and not skip a beat? I'm guessing just handful, But we're Linebacker U, and Bob Flounders is saying Bani Gbadyu, Mike Mauti, and Gerald Hodges are looking ready to go. And if they can't go, Nate Stupar and Mike Yancich are also getting good reviews. Remember in the spring, Joe Paterno said he wasn't at all worried about the linebackers. The offensive line, on the other hand...

Speaking of Joe, there has been a lot of concern about his health lately after he missed a few speaking engagements, but Jay Paterno says he's doing just fine. In fact, the older Paterno is enjoying himself at his beach house in New Jersey.

But his son, Penn State quarterbacks coach Jay Paterno, said Friday that his legendary father is feeling much better and enjoying a family vacation at the beach.

"A friend of mine has a place about two blocks from his at the Jersey shore and he said, 'I saw him getting ice cream and he's on the beach,' " Jay said during a Lift for Life charity event at Holuba Hall.

"There's really not any thoughts crossing his mind that he's slowing down. He's lost some weight and part of it was he's now trying to walk more and get himself in fighting shape for the season.

"If we had practice tomorrow or played a game tomorrow, he'd be fine."

No word on if he got the Rocky Road or Mint Chocolate Chip.

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