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BSD Mailbag 6.26.15

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Look into your crystal ball and name the starting offense and defense first-string line-ups for 2016. You are allowed three TBD’s for each side, but aside from that you have to use current players or known/potential 2016 commits. PSU_Lions_84

This was actually much easier than I thought, and it also proves this will be a very experienced and talented team in 2016 (especially if there are no early departures for the NFL....cough, cough,HACK, cough, cough, AUSTIN JOHNSON). The hardest part was trying to predict who will improve and who are likely to lose their spots along the offensive line, as well as trying to guess which receivers will be the primary targets by the end of the season. I was tempted to include Juwan Johnson and Saeed Blacknall, but for now I'm sticking with the "known-knowns." I also nearly went with Troy Apke opposite Marcus Allen at safety, but decided to stick with the more experienced Malik Golden.

WR- DaeSean Hamilton
WR- Geno Lewis
WR- Chris Godwin
LT- Andrew Nelson
LG- Derek Dowrey
C- Wendy Laurent
RG- Chasz Wright  
RT- Sterling Jenkins
TE- Adam Breneman
QB- Christian Hackenberg 
RB- Akeel Lynch

DE- Garrett Sickels
DT- Austin Johnson
DT- Parker Cothren
DE- Torrence Brown
OLB- Jason Cabinda
MLB- Nyeem Wartman-White
OLB- Brandon Bell
CB- Grant Haley
S- Marcus Allen
S- Malik Golden
CB- Christian Campbell

Now feel free to endlessly debate this and tell me where I went wrong in the comments section.

If Penn State were going to lose 2 games on the last possession, what teams would you prefer to lose to (osu/msu eliminated)? You Touch-a my car I break-a your face

I hate losing a game on the last possession because it will always come down to something completely preventable like a blown coverage, a failure to get a first down, or a terrible call by the official (especially considering the quality of Big Ten refs). Getting beat by a better team is one thing- having to think about that one play here or there that cost you a game drives fans crazy and can completely derail a team's season. Anywhoo, if I had to pick from the 2015 schedule (excluding OSU and MSU as stated above) I would go with Northwestern and Army. Losing any game at the last moment would sting, but in this case I would at least be able to produce a shred of happiness for the other team.* After some thought, I may pick these teams even if OSU or MSU were included. Those may be especially tough because the team basically overachieved to get in a position to win before completely letting them off the hook.

*Which would occur around 2030 when I finally get over losing a game to Northwestern or Army.

Best Phil Hartman character on The Simpsons? Tomathy

Troy McClure made me laugh with every single opening line in all of his many appearances. For those of you unfamiliar with this character, you may have read about him on other Penn State blogs including 'Schultz is the Cops' and 'Whose Rivalry Is It Anyways?' Hartman was also the original voice of one of my favorite characters, Fat Tony, which was taken over by Joe Mantegna after his death. If you have FXX and the 2,629 episodes of the Simpsons that air each week, be sure to set your DVR for Hartman's final episode, Bart the Mother. Also check out McCLure's signature episode, "A Fish Called Selma," which is easily one of the greatest half-hour of The Simpsons ever created.

Best Phil Hartman character on SNL? bveo12

I still have no explanation of why it's so funny to me, but Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer will always remain as one of my favorite SNL sketches. Everything Phil Hartman touched was pure comedic gold, so you could go with nearly any of his many beloved SNL characters. RIP, Phil.

How do you feel about Homer and Marge separating? Sperbro

They've had their fair share squabbles during the past 27 years, but I'm certain that like all the others this one will be resolved in less than 30 minutes and end with a "make-up snuggle."

A couple observations: Marge has the patience of a saint. The only way a woman like her would put up with Homer's antics is because she's a fictional character. Also, did you notice all the hubbub over the news of their potential separation? And people say The Simpsons are no longer relevant...

Is the Simpson's finally dead(er) now that Harry Shearer has left? Will anyone notice? mbailey71

Call me crazy, but I firmly believe Harry Shearer will be back for season 27. It could just be that I'm in denial because I just can't picture The Simpsons without the man behind nearly all of its many beloved characters.

The producers of the show have made it clear the likes of Mr. Burns, Ned Flanders, Otto and Kent Brockman will carry on with or without Shearer. Perhaps they find voice doubles, or even more troubling, give all these characters slightly different voices. If so, that could finally be the death knell of what has been an international cultural icon for nearly three decades. Let's hope otherwise- regardless of the online chatter, The Simpsons remain one of the consistently brilliant and hilarious shows on television. If you checked out long ago, please give the more recent episodes a try- I doubt you will be disappointed.

Futurama: Best show ever or greatest show ever? gestaltshift

Great show. It never came close to The Simpsons for me, but it was a consistently great show packed with original humor.

Not that you asked, but my favorite character (by a landslide) was Bender. My favorite minor character was the Robot Devil...those were definitely my favorite episodes. Gluttonbot is a close second, along with the giant green news anchor.

Since we're discussing Phil Hartman, a couple fun facts about his influence on Futurama: Philip J. Fry was named in memory of Hartman. He was originally known just as "Fry" before the first name was added in Hartman's honor. Also, Zap Brannigan was written especially for Hartman, which when you stop and think about it, makes perfect sense. Now every time you see an episode with Zap, you will likely be picturing Hartman in your head.

Who from the new Star Wars movie will be the first to host SNL? Former_DC_Buck

I think they'll skip over the likes of Harrison Ford and Mark Hamill and go with one of the insanely talented up-and-comers with either Lupita Nyong'o or Oscar Isaac. I've always found that talented, versatile actors make better hosts than comedians/comedic actors and I'm sure either would have the range put together a very funny show.

Which minor character on Senifeld is best? Gerry Dincher

I'll declare a tie between Frank Costanza and Mickey, Kramer's buddy and sometimes acting partner. Seinfeld is the greatest sitcom of all-time, yet Frank Costanza's character somehow stole the show with every appearance. Mickey was responsible for some of Kramer's funniest moments, and the episode where he attacks Kramer during an audition for not being able to "take a seat" because of his skintight jeans is the most criminally underappreciated episode of the series.

Who would win in a battle of 1 tank vs. 1 billion babies? The only facts as we know them: The tank has no ammunition, but infinite fuel The babies, as much as their brains can comprehend, are trying to actively destroy the tank (think clubbing it with tiny fists, teething on it, drooling on it, perhaps taking off their diapers and dropping some heat on it, etc.) Those are the only known facts for this battle, who wins? Lucius429

The tank. Because it's a tank.