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BSD Mailbag 11.26.21

It’s the last mailbag of the regular football season!

NCAA Football: Rutgers at Penn State
It’s a photo of nothing but Canadian PSU players! 3 for the price of none!
Matthew OHaren-USA TODAY Sports

How many delay of game penalties are there going to be next year due to “Blue 52, eh, blue 52, eh, Omaha, eh, Omaha, eh, Omaha, eh”?—LocalYocal

I am not ashamed to admit that I snorted when I read this comment. We’re truly Canada’s school now! (sorry to all folks, including one of my best friends, who have an irrational dislike of all things Canadian).

Should Oh Canada start being played at Beaver Stadium? Also, Florida fired its coach. Is CJF interested? Is UF interested in CJF?—LarzLion

I actually had this thought when I was in the Peg for the first time the week before the Michigan game. I know that the NHL plays Oh Canada when one of the teams is Canadian (and also in Buffalo, since it’s so close to the border) – but of course, all NCAA teams are US-based, and so play the Star Spangled Banner. But maybe we should start a new tradition!

Also, lol. No. They would likely take Franklin in a heartbeat, but he’s not going anywhere (which I was pretty confident about even before this week’s announcement of his contract extension).

Who has more Canadians, the football team or the hockey team?—LionfanAllan

I find it interesting that Penn State’s new “Canadian pipeline” was being remarked upon a few years ago – well before Christian Veilleux and Malick Meiga connected on what may be FBS football’s first Canadian-to-Canadian touchdown.

The football team currently has six of Canadians on its roster - Ontarians Theo Johnson (TE), Jesse Luketa (DE/LB), Jonathan Sutherland (S), and Veilleux (QB), and Quebecois Frederik Lesier (S) and Meiga (WR). Out of 128, that’s just under 5% of its current roster.

In comparison, the hockey team has just 5 (4 from Ontario, 1 from Alberta) – but with just 25 players on the roster, 20% of the roster is Canadian. So while the overall numbers are close, I’ll give the edge to the hockey team.

Fun fact – even if you broaden the requirements of this exercise to include all foreign players, not just Canadians (adding in P Barney Amor from Switzerland, DT Joseph Appiah Darkwa and WR Jan Mahlert from Germany, and DT Jordan van den Berg from South Africa), football still lags in percentage with just over 7% foreign players.

Which Class of 2022 recruit, excluding Drew Allar, has you most excited about the future of Penn State football?—Gerry Dincher

I’m nothing if not consistent, so it’s probably punter Alex Bacchetta, I know that San Diego State likely has the Ray Guy winner this year, but I’m biased and so it’s a travesty that it is a foregone conclusion that Jordan Stout won’t win. He’s consistently put the team in positions to do well, all season. And since #puntingiswinning, give me the only American punter in 247’s top five punters of the 2022 recruiting class.

But seriously, anyone who says it’s not Allar is not someone I believe, or is a family member of someone else signing in the class of 2022.

Expecting any early enrollees this year? If so, who are they?—jiminore

Yes! Quite a few, actually – including both QBs (Allar and Beau Pribula). Of course, nothing’s set in stone until they actually sign next month and arrive on campus the month after, but most experts are predicting nine or ten players (including four of PSU’s top-rated five players in the class) to enroll in January. When you factor in the fact that the class is solidly in the top five in the nation, and one of Franklin’s best (if not *the* best), well then…that’s pretty good.

Who are the QBs come June 2022? Don’t forget about the decent recruits from the 2020 and 2021 classes.—PSU1979dude

I’d be surprised if we see Ta’Quan Roberson in a PSU uniform again – that doesn’t necessarily mean he’ll leave (he may get his Penn State degree and not pursue football elsewhere), but with Saturday’s Veilleux coming out party, he finds himself at least third on the depth chart to close out 2021…with two highly touted recruits coming in.

This all depends on whether Sean Clifford decides to come back for the 2022 season (which will likely depend on whether he thinks he can go in the draft in 2023 after an injury-plagued 2021 season, and whether he wants to throw to his brother Liam on the regular). If Sean does come back, we’re looking at:

· Clifford

· Veilleux

· Allar

· Pribula

· Stahl

Besides Clifford, all the QBs will have four years left on campus if they want it, which is good news but also shows how terrifyingly young this group is – so I wouldn’t be surprised if the staff goes after a high profile transfer or two.

Just because, gosh dang it Cari, you deserve a 500 comment post too...What do you think of CJF’s new contract?—LocalYocal

I’m firmly in the camp that this was good news. It provides stability, and frankly isn’t a huge pay increase for Franklin (unlike Mel Tucker’s new contract over in East Lansing) – it’s more about the back end and the commitments that the BOT and University is making to the football program. We still don’t know what the assistants are making at Penn State, but I’d be surprised if a further pledge to bump up the salaries of that group wasn’t also a part of the new contract.

It’s so funny to me that there are so many PSU fans who are upset at the news, but there are just as many USC and LSU fans who are too because they want him. The cognitive disconnect – the idea that he is not good enough to stay at Penn State, but good enough to go to other high profile destinations – shows me the illogic of this continued discussion. Franklin is a good coach. Every good coach sometimes makes weird or boneheaded decisions. He keeps his players out of trouble, graduating, and has winning seasons every year while at PSU (and has won 2 NY6 games and a Big Ten title). That’s pretty darn impressive thing to do while coaching in the midst of an historic run by a division foe.

It’s been over 3 years since Penn State has scheduled a home-and-home series for non-conference. Who and when will PSU be announcing a new series? The last series scheduled was Temple (H&H) for 2026 & 2027—P_State

I think we’ll be waiting for a bit, until Sandy Barbour’s successor is in place. That would be the first big thing that any new athletic director would want to do – a splashy new OOC football game announced.

Who else sees that #5 ND is really just #4 ND in waiting? There is no scenario that allows Cincinnati to get in over a one loss ND. (reading $$ between $$ the $$ lines)—EagleLionSly

I hope you’re not correct – because an undefeated Cincinnati already beat Notre Dame on the field. But the committee’s shenanigans with MSU and Michigan a few weeks ago (prior to Michigan State’s downturn against Purdue and OSU) has sort of foreshadowed that this year’s committee is a shitshow and doesn’t know what they are doing. C’mon, John Urschel! You’re more logical than this!

The transfer portal is changing college football…maybe for better, maybe for worse.

Whichever, it isn’t going away. MSU this year has shown how a team can be completely reshaped using the portal and I consider it one extreme, while Clemson takes virtually no transfers and builds their team with almost 100% new recruits from high school. I think the old ratio of new recruits to transfers was around 90:10 for an incoming class. Seems it’s starting to shift to more 80:20, and with Juco recruits maybe even more like 80:10:10, with the 20% split between transfers from 4 yr schools and Juco kids. New recruits are always a crap shoot with many highly ranked kids never really panning out while with transfers and Juco players you often have more tape to evaluate their potential for your program. Given all that, what do you see are the right mix over the next few years? Relatively the same, increased transfer/Juco, more reliance on the transfer or the Juco to fill out the squad? Demographics will play a role too as they are declining in the northeast. Personally, I can see PSU eventually getting to a place of 60% new, 20% Juco, and 20% transfer fairly soon.—RWReese

I think we’ll see a higher percentage, but 60/20/20 seems really aggressively high to me. I don’t see Juco transfers every getting above 10-15% (ten percent would still be roughly 13 players, which is…a lot). I don’t see PSU ever getting over 30% non-recruited-incoming freshman under Franklin, just because of his coaching philosophy and the relationships he builds.

Obviously, some incoming transfers can immediately come in, make a difference and fit in culturally with the rest of the Penn State team (if we didn’t nab Arnold Ebiketie this past offseason, we would have lost at Wisconsin to start the season) – but for the most part, the way this team has seemingly worked is by creating a family and a team, building relationships. It’s harder to do that when you rely on players coming in to play one year and then moving on.

What would you suggest the athletic department improve for next seasons’ Beaver Stadium game day experience?

Don’t be surprised if you see football invoices hitting your mailbox on Dec 3rd, increased seat donation this year, increased ticket prices next year and increased parking costs the year after. As they ask for more money each year, they need to do something to keep us buying in—kingkub

Nothing surprises me anymore – except when people are surprised that prices don’t stay the same. The seat donations help cover the costs of athletic scholarships and facilities for not just football, but all other sports at Penn State; I may be the exception (it wouldn’t be the first time), but I’m ok with shelling out another $25 or $50 per seat for my season tickets, if it means more kids can go to school and get academic and athletic support. I can afford it; I understand that’s not the case for everyone who wants to go to PSU games, and I’m sure Penn State does too. They have a lot of smart people doing cost-benefit analyses for all of these increases and price changes, and while I’m nowhere near my breaking point, I’m sure others are well past it. But that’s the price of high-profile NCAA football these days, however long it lasts.

I don’t really have any issues with the game-day experience; the only thing I’d really like to see is the widening of seats. With my chronic back problems, I’d like to get rid of all the cold metal benches and put in actual seats for everyone. But I’m not holding my breath.

What happens first: My retirement in May 2032 or Groundbreaking of the Beaver Stadium Renovations?—Admiral Lord Nelson

The master plan was announced what, four years ago? And they still haven’t broken ground. But the football schedule last year and this lines up well with major offseason upgrades (ending and starting away from Penn State), so maybe it’s the rare optimism in me, but I think groundbreaking will occur sometime within the next decade. If it doesn’t, then it probably won’t occur at all.

Has anyone been to Maryland for wrestling? I am off for the dual and will go. Didn’t know if I can get tickets at the door? Crowded? Or do I need to buy in advance? I assume there will be a good amount of PSU fans in attendance.—rph75

I’ve been a few times, never needing to buy tickets in advance. The last time I was there, they moved the PSU dual out of the gym in the basement of the Comcast Center where they normally host wrestling – and instead had the main arena host the dual. Of course, that was the same in previous years for the volleyball matchup, but earlier this year Maryland hosted PSU in a sold-out gym instead of moving it, so they may have decided that the increased ticket sales of having the event in the bigger location is not outweighed by any perceived home-mat bias of a smaller arena (not unlike Penn State keeping big duals in Rec Hall).

Just keep an ear out for Robin Ficker on the sidelines of the dual meet. He tried to trash talk Morgan McIntosh last time I was there and Morgan just cracked up the entire time.

why do we have to have 75 words for a Fanpost? I’m sure this has been asked before……We’ve put a man on the moon but we need to fill posts with filling to hit that magical 75 word limit…Filling or Stuffing…..have at it—kingkub

This is ultimately above my pay grade, but I think it’s because a FanPost is supposed to be a place where non-masthead community members can write their own think pieces on the team. If it’s under 75 words, they want the discussion in the FanShots – but BSD is very different than most other SBN communities, and what is normal elsewhere isn’t normal here. No one reading the FanShots is fairly universal, though.

What’s the correct phrase - Go pound salt? Or go pound sand? I only ever heard salt growing up and until recently, on BSD, did I become aware of the sand version. I wonder if it’s regional, or the people around me are idiots.—swift_retribution

I’ve only ever heard sand, so it must be a regional thing. Apparently “sand” came first, though – and both are idioms almost exclusively used in the Americas, not in England.

I had an exchange this weekend with a dude who insisted for any annoyingly long time that I was incorrect to use the phrase “champing at the bit” when it should be “chomping.” Even after showing him after working the google on the internet machine that the phrase is in fact “champing” and not “chomping” he continued to say that “chomping” was right b/c it sounds better. My question is why do some people seem to enjoy being morons so much?—MJBPSU

Kind of the opposite of above – I’d never heard “champing” before (or maybe if I did, I just assumed the person said “chomping” and my ears were deceiving me), but apparently it’s the original usage of the idiom! Chomping at the big is a variation, but a more recent one (and one that is now more widespread).

Cranberry sauce jelly from the can or Cranberry sauce made with real cranberries and orange juice and zest, maple syrup and cinnamon?BMAN13

Both have their times and places, and in a pinch I’ll take it from the can (that’s what my mom prefers), but if given the chance, I’ll always go for fresh real cranberry sauce. It just provides a more well-rounded flavor that complements turkey really well.

Can we make “TWBSDS” a thing? Franklin’s getting a huuuuuuuge extension ……TWBSDS.—Dbridi

You do you, boo. But I have a feeling you might be the only one who tries to make this a thing…

Is there a plan for those Missing BSD Persons - those people who are regular posters who just disappear from the site? Can we get them on a milk bottle? Or perhaps a “Where are they now?” series of articles?—Dbridi

I suggest you put up a fanpost for this! As with many things in life, participation in the BSD community (most especially the comments section) is cyclical. It’s rare that you’ll have folks who stay for years if not over a decade, though of course there are some of us still here who were around when BSD Mike ran the roost. I’m not an original BSDer, but I’m close to it – and still have irl friendships with folks who no longer are part of the community for whatever reason (graduation, marriages, families…or grief). I do miss seeing some of those same names every day, but respect the choices of those who decide to step away for whatever reason.

If you want to put out a bat signal to older community users to come back and rejoin the discussion, feel free!

What is the worst thing that can happen to ruin your day?

· stepping in dog shit

· spilling coffee/food on your shirt/pants

· speeding ticket on way to work

· sudden rain shower with no umbrella

· missing the train

· other


For me, of the things you listed, missing the train would be the worst – I plan out pretty intricately how long things should take me, and I severely dislike anything that gets me off schedule (so I guess a speeding ticket would be similar, though the time component of being pulled over would bother me more than the ticket itself), including unexpected traffic.

I’m a walking disaster, so stepping in dog poop or spilling coffee on myself wouldn’t be completely out of character and the latter in fact happens pretty frequently. And also, rain dries, so that’s not a day ruiner – but walking into the office and a pigeon pooping in my hair just might be…

What’s your take on working over the holidays? Do you take vacation/PTO to extend the holiday time off, or do you work those days since it’s usually quieter and less demanding since other people take off?—Succss With Honor Always

I normally try to take off the day after Christmas – there’s so much buildup to the holiday, and then immediately on Boxing Day we’re expected to get over it and go back to usual. I hate that so I like having a little more time on the tail end to decompress.

But I’m lucky – my family is all within driving distance, so I don’t have to plan out train or plane rides to see my loved ones around Christmas. I’ll take off PTO when I have use-it-or-lose-it (like this year) but I don’t mind being one of the folks who are in when no one else is, since I am able to see my family so often and so easily.

What’s a cool game day high school football tradition that your school had or would be worth stealing from college? It seems that many colleges now sing the school song after the game, and I love the idea of a victory bell, but was just wondering what other schools have done or are starting to do now.—Dbridi

My high school has (and had) a significant football tradition on the field, but I honestly don’t remember anything off the field. That may just be my faulty memory of anything that occurred over 20 years ago, though.

Overall, as a society I think we’ve leaned into nostalgia a bit this last decade or two, and reverence for institutions and what’s come before. I think that’s where the singing of the alma mater/school song after the game comes from, and I don’t hate it. I did hate when folks sang “we don’t know the GD words” to the PSU alma mater when I was a student, and I steadfastly refused to do so (I grew up knowing the GD words, and still don’t see how not knowing them is a badge of honor).

What is your most positive memory from your time as a student in elementary school?—Gerry Dincher

For whatever reason, I don’t have a ton of elementary school memories – but I do really remember loving the Teddy Bear picnic in kindergarten, and the fiestas we had in Spanish class in 3rd and 4th grades.

What was your favorite school cafeteria food? Granted, I’m from the old sticks (noted because they started improving the lunch choices IMMEDIATELY after I graduated!), but I still make a creation called “pizza rounds” to this day and I ALWAYS looked forward to holiday meals because they came with a simple peanutbutter-on-bottom-covered-with-melted-chocolate-then-refrigerated creation that I would pick over a Reese’s cup in a heartbeat. I was always a double-luncher, but when these or a few other options were presented, I’d go triple.—LocalYocal

I used to always LOVE the orange popsicle bars you could get in the cafeteria. I’ve always been a dessert lover, and would get that or chocolate milk if I could as much as possible. But I didn’t buy school lunches most of the time, if memory serves.

I’m one of the very few people who *didn’t* really like pizza day, because the pizza was too much crust and not enough cheese. But the tacos were decent, even if I’m still not sure the meat was real meat. Or that I want to know if it was or wasn’t.

My 10 year old had to do a research project for school. It could be on any subject, as long as it was school appropriate. We were contacted by the teacher:

Teacher: I had all sorts of subjects researched, chinchillas, favorite soccer teams, video games, etc.

Me: Oh, shit…. What did my kid do?

Teacher: Well…. His topic was….”What’s The meaning of life?”…. And his conclusion was “42”

That’s some good parenting right there, if I do say so myself. Did I mention the kid is only 10 years old?—Tmbgiants_3

This is great parenting, and a good story to end on. Happy Thanksgiving weekend, everyone! I hope you’ve all stuffed your bellies full and spent lovely times with loved ones. Go state!