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BSD Mailbag 6.19.2018

We continue our trek through the long, boring off-season by answering your most pressing questions

Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Is Dabo Swinney the most polarizing figure in PSU sports fandom? - Houtzy

Of course, I realize that this comment is made tongue-in-cheek, as I’m pretty sure we all know who the most polarizing figure in PSU sports fandom is - Pat Chambers, of course. Though it is amazing how someone that has virtually nothing to do with Penn State can stir up so many emotions for our commenters. For the record, I think the recent article that aired on BSD, comparing Dabo to James Franklin is a good one. Their football-related resumes are shockingly similar. My hope, of course, is that the next 5 years bear similar results for PSU as Clemson has gone through under Swinney.

That being said, I can’t say that I agree with the way Dabo conducts himself off the field. I have no problem with people being religious, even though I myself am not. What irks me is the fact that an employee of a state-owned facility uses their position of power to preach and proselytize with impunity. I’m a big believer in the separation of church and state, and to see such public displays rubs me the wrong way. Especially when his team very visibly conducts some questionable behavior, and he publicly defends their actions.

I’m sure the comments section from this answer will be fun, so remember to keep it clean everyone!

Speaking of the comments section:

Given recent events is it possible to have a block user or ignore user button? I think it would help with some of the arguments. - swift_retribution

We here at BSD strive to keep an open-minded comments section, with the opportunity for people from all walks of life to voice their opinions without fear of retribution. No downvotes, no personal attacks. If you disagree with someone, feel free to say so in a calm, even manner. It is a fact of life that not everyone is going to agree on everything, and there are a great many hot button topics that could be discussed. The moderators tend to steer conversations away from certain topics, but that’s only because those topics are very personal to a lot of people. No sense in getting offended - or offending others - on a Penn State sports message board. We’re here to discuss the lack of fullbacks in our offense, not get fired up over international diplomacy.

As a gentle reminder, personal attacks are never allowed, and religion and politics are almost always taboo. If you feel that a comment has violated the rules of this site, use the Flag button to let the moderators know why. We visit all of the pages regularly, and will take the proper action. Let the moderators moderate - don’t take it upon yourself to try to right the perceived wrong.

Will Dear Old State ever have a decent baseball team? - LarzLion

Baseball is one of the sports that I don’t really care much for. I think I went to one baseball game in my 5 years at Penn State, and I only went because my roommate got free tickets, and a voucher for a free hot dog and drink. I’m also a Mets fan, so my interest in baseball is piqued once a decade, before the fightin’ Metropolitans descend back to the depths of the NL East. So I may not be the best person to answer this question, but gosh darnit, I will give it the old college try.

For the Nittany Lions, I really don’t see it happening. There are a few “northerly” teams that are okay at baseball, such as Indiana and Kentucky, but even they don’t have quite the winter weather that Penn State has. Without the ability to practice and play outdoors for 10+ months of the year, player development is only going to get so far. Without player development, the team doesn’t put up huge win totals, and as such the students don’t attend games. The only way I see Penn State getting good at baseball is if global warming gets us to the point that we can enjoy Georgia-like winters in central Pennsylvania.

How soon would you die if you took a shot of Jack Daniels every time the sports talking heads say “LeBron James?” - Gerry Dincher

Oh gosh. Well, for starters, Jack Daniels is my own personal hemlock. That stuff is worse for me than tequila. It tastes like a horse’s ass, and kicks like a mule. Maybe a few more farmyard-related cliches too. I’ve never enjoyed it, and the few times I’ve had it, I tend not to remember much of what happened. So truthfully, more than a couple brief mentions of the King and I’d be down for the count.

Now, that being said, it has taken me a LONG time to come around on LeBron James. When he first came out of high school, my personal all-time favorite player - Kobe Bryant - was still playing and winning championships. So for people to preemptively anoint James the best of all time bothered me to no end. Follow that up with “The Decision” nonsense, and the idea that LeBron could only win a championship when surrounded by a bunch of superstars, and I scoffed at him ever being the GOAT.

The last couple years, though, I’ve started to soften on him. Perhaps it’s because the Lakers have been trash, and my overall competitive interest in the NBA has waned, or perhaps it’s because James has single-handedly willed more teams to the NBA finals than should be possible, but I’m legitimately starting to like him. So the talking heads jabbering on and on about him is perfectly fine by me. I think LeBron is actually a good guy, in conjunction with being one of the top players in the NBA of all time.

His fashion sense? That’s another story.

When approaching three urinals with one in use, which one should you choose? On the left is a child-height urinal not being used, then two standard height to the right, with the far right occupied. So you have a choice of the child-height (which will give you the proper man-code distance to the next guy), or do you take the middle urinal to leave the left one empty for a kid in an emergency, thereby looking like you’re getting too close to the other guy? - 48-14

Call me a grumpy old curmudgeon, but that child-height urinal is mine. Especially if there aren’t any partitions/splash guards. One of Man Code’s chief rules is to leave space at the wall of urinals, and I wouldn’t dare to upset the universal balance. Besides, how long would a kid have to wait? 30 seconds? Alternatively, the kid could be a man, and use the adult-size urinal. It’s called the Man Code, not the Boy Code.

If somebody not named Penn State, Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, or Wisconsin wins the B1G, who is it? - ckmneon

I actually really liked ck’s answer of Iowa. As they point out, Iowa misses most of the big dogs in crossover play, and have always been quietly good under Kirk Ferentz. That being said, I’ll go with Northwestern. They finished 10-3 last year, good for a number 17 ranking, and also went 10-3 in 2015. They’re one of those sneaky-good teams almost every year under Pat Fitzgerald. While they may not always contend for the conference crown, they’re a thorn in the side for most teams.

This year they get Michigan, Nebraska, and Wisconsin at home, plus their biggest out-of-conference game against Notre Dame is at home too. I personally think a conference crown is a long shot for the Wildcats in 2018, but with the addition of former 5-star quarterback Hunter Johnson, watch out for Northwestern in 2019.

When was the last time Indiana won the Big 10? When do you expect them to do it again? - jiminore

According to ye olde Wikipedia, Indiana last won the B1G in 1967. During that year, they split the title with Minnesota and Purdue, when all three teams went 6-1 in conference. The Hoosiers finished #4 in the AP poll, and #6 in the coaches poll, losing to USC in the Rose Bowl 14-3.

When will they win it again? When Penn State, Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, and Wisconsin all get hit with postseason bans in the same year. And Iowa, after the easy cakewalk to the conference championship game, gets team-wide dysentery after eating a bad batch of Nebraska corn from their post-game buffet in Lincoln the week before.

How long can room-temperature pizza be safely consumed? - 48-14

Truth be told, I’m well past my college days, in which a room temperature box of half-eaten pizza could be randomly found on my coffee table at all times. Back then, if there were pizza in the box, I’d eat it, and not think twice about it. Now? I’d say you’re probably okay after 1 day, but 2 days may be pushing it.

In any case, be sure to have some Tums on hand.