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BSD Mailbag 3.27.2019

You know it’s the offseason when only one football question pops up

Photo by Paul Marotta/Getty Images for for Hasty Pudding Institute of 1770

What’s worse: Sitting on an ice cold toilet seat or sitting on a warm toilet seat that you know is warm because someone else’s flesh heated it up right before you sat on it. - psualum9931

So obviously both are awful, but I’ll take the initial cold shock over the lingering warmth any time. The cold dissipates in a few seconds, whereas the warmth from the previous person punching a grumpy then melds with my own as I drop a Harbaugh, to the point that it’s impossible to tell where one starts and the other ends.

I suppose a workaround to this would be just to gargoyle away, and let whatever happens behind you happen.

How many more waste of time Chambers discussion threads will we have in the next 12 months? - psualum9931

I’ll set the early O/U at 3.5, and cautiously take the under. See below.

Can you give me three reasons to believe that next basketball season will be anything different than a disapointment? Can you give me ONE reason? - chulupabatman

Three? No, probably not. But one?

No, not really either.

The closest thing I have going for Chambers is that he’s staying put. While I’m pretty firmly in the fire him camp, there is something to be said for stability. Had he been fired, the talented youth on this team probably bails, and then we’re looking at Pitt under Stallings level bad.

With the youngsters staying put, and perhaps some key upperclassmen returning... maybe next year is the year?

What’s the deal with chicken baskets? I haven’t been to a home football game since 2008, and only recently became aware that chicken baskets were the popular concession stand food. I’m having difficulty understanding what seems to be rabid support for a simple cardboard tub containing french fries and chicken tenders. - 06Lion

I think they started out as the least crappy food option at Penn State, and when enough drunk people commiserate over marginally acceptable food options, it becomes legend. Sort of like Canyon Pizza.

Don’t get me wrong, I freaking love Canyon Pizza. But want to know what happened the last time I got a slice when I was sober?

I realized it’s exceptionally average pizza.

Get a few drinks in me and ask me where I want food from, best believe I’m shambling my way to get some cheapo pizza the size of my face.

I think it’s the same thing with the chicken baskets.

Also, kids freaking LOVE chicken fingers, so all of the alums bringing kiddos to the game can a) get a hot, fried basket of nostalgia, and b) satiate their screaming demon spawn for 10 minutes.

Also, fun fact, Hot Fried Basket of Nostalgia was my nickname in prison.

What is the proper pronunciation of your last name? In my mind I read it a Loo-sha. But in high school there was an Italian exchange student who pronounced it Loo-CHia. I could also see other ways to pronounce it, like, for instance Loo-see-uh. - “that guy”

You got it right the first time, it’s pronounced LOO-sha.

I’ve gotten all of the other pronunciations you’ve mentioned, though my favorite has to be loo-KAI-a. Like really dude?

Also, another fun fact. My ancestors came from the Calabria area of Italy, and decided to leave for America because they were having some run ins with the local mafia. They got to America at a time when Italian immigrants were not exactly welcomed, and faced discrimination because of it.

My ancestors realized that if they changed their name, they’d be less apt to be harassed, and could more easily assimilate into their new country. Did they go with a common American name like Smith?

Psh, hell no! They decided to change the pronunciation from loo-CHI-a to LOO-sha. Ya know, because it sounds completely different. Nevermind that Lucia and Lucia look EXACTLY THE SAME on paper.

Ladies and gentlemen, my ancestral genius family members, that have produced the current Mensa member writing this mailbag for you.

Will we be better at football this year than last? - PhillyLion

Ya know, I really think we will.

First, I love Trace to death, but with his receivers doing him no favors, he lost faith in the passing game. He opted to run more, and got injured, affecting both portions of his game.

Tommy is going to be fine at QB. Better than fine if you ask me. Our receivers have a youth movement, but honestly, with the veterans crapping the bed in 2018, I’m down with some fresh blood.

The offensive line may never be 1994 good, but there’s talent across the board, and some of the new starters should bring some meanness that has been lacking.

Our defense is going to be good. Real good. Lose Givens and Miller, replace them with Mustipher and Simmons.

Lose Farmer, replace him with Parsons.

Lose Oruwariye and Scott, replace them with Castro-Fields and Wade.

Oh and special teams - lose Galiano, replace him with Lorig.

Legitimately, the floor next year should be 10 wins. Getting past OSU will be tough as always, and the Iowa-Michigan-MSU stretch is tough. But still, 10 wins is the floor for me, looking at this roster.

Do you feel bad for Steelers’ fans? I am not a fan, but the team has had quite a sheet-storm this winter, coupled with the fact the the Browns appear to be on the upswing recently, it’s looking like Duquesne may have the most wins in the Steel city this fall with the pigskin. - LarzLion

I’m currently living in Yinzer country, and my wife is born and raised here. I’ve adopted the Steelers as my second team as such.

On the one hand, yeah, having both Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Brown go bananas at the same time isn’t great. Replacing two high production guys like that will always be tough. But then, it’s the NFL, and no one is irreplaceable.

Which leads me to the other hand, in which the Steelers have routinely been one of the best teams in the AFC. Meanwhile my Giants continue to poop in their pants, reach on in there, smear some on the wall, and then read the streaks as some sort of Rorschach test to figure out how best to run a team, and I think - a little bit of humble pie may be good for the Stillers.

TBH, I’m a closet Browns fan after the OBJ trade anyway. Don’t tell my wife.

What’s a more damning look for Sandy Barbour? Outsourcing the women’s basketball coaching search to Ventura Partners (At least Dave Joyner setup search committees for BoB AND CJF with Penn Staters), her inability to fundraise (as we’ve seen at her previous stops, as well), or her Title IX suit filed during her tenure at Cal? - Admiral Lord Nelson

I mean, it has to be the Title IX suit doesn’t it? The outsourcing and fundraising questions are valid, but pale in comparison to the gravity of a Title IX suit.

That being said, outsourcing a job search perhaps is indicative of her recognizing her own limitations, and finding a quality workaround.

And while we’d all love to have gigantic renovations to Beaver Stadium and Lasch, she’s quietly done a solid job of increasing coaching compensation, and putting together at least some upgrades to the football facilities. Her recent hire of Scott Sidwell as deputy director of athletics may also be an attempt at recognizing her own limitations and finding a way around them, as Sidwell is known as a high quality fundraiser.

FMK: Ryan Reynolds, Ryan Gosling, Ryan Phillippe - garder54

Who the hell is Ryan Phillippe? I guess I’ll kill him off, since I had to google him.

A third fun fact for you, Ryan Reynolds is my celebrity man crush, so of course I’m going to ride off into the sunset with him.

I guess that leaves me and Ryan Gosling to do the deed, awkwardly get breakfast the next day, then after the sad realization of what just took place really sinks in, promise to keep in touch, but then vow to never do that again.

Got any tips to improve a small grass lawn? Small yard, lots of bare spots. Last summer and fall, I tried seeding at three different times with three different seed mixtures. Got about a 10% hit rate. Soil pH was tested and in line with whatever is normal. Watered every day, sometimes twice/day. - 48-14

Sounds like you’ve done your due diligence in trying to get your lawn to behave. If it’s just going to be tough sledding, you could either go the southwest route and throw in a bunch of river rocks, or go the fancy route and throw down some sod. Though if the topsoil is crap, it’s probably just a matter of time before the sod dies on you too.

Where is the MBB open thread for the NCAA tournament? - Dbridi

First of all, how dare you?

Second of all, if things break right, it could be next year. Probably not, but a man can dream. Could you imagine having the wrestling championships, the B1G hockey tournament, AND March Madness going on at the same time? Hoo lawd.

Third of all, I’m currently sitting pretty with 13 out of 16 Sweet Sixteen teams correctly selected, along with 7/8 Elite Eight teams, and 4/4 Final Four teams. Come at me bros.

Choose either or: Win 8/9 National titles in Wrestling, or win 4 over the next 10 years in football? - Talon122

Ha, trick question! We already got 8/9 national titles in wrestling, so give me 4/10 national championships in football please!

Even if we hadn’t gotten the wrasslin’ championships, I’m a football guy first and foremost. Football is what sealed the deal for me going to Penn State, rather than Pitt or Ship or Temple or whatever other small school. That and the high quality engineering program, but football was a big part of it. Seeing a national championship in my lifetime is high on my bucket list.

Wondering when he’s gonna answer this mailbag ...Or are we all being played? - LarzLion