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BSD Mailbag 9.10.21

It’s much better to start the season 1-0 than the alternative. Just saying.

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COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 04 Penn State at Wisconsin Photo by Dan Sanger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Any chance PSU pulls an Illinois this week after the big win?— LarzLion

You put this in sarcasm font on the fanpost, but I’m actually concerned the line is too high. Not that I’m expecting Ball State to win, but they did win the MAC last year (wonky year it was). I expect them to hang around in the first half, long enough for the James Franklin haters to rain boos down on the team headed into the locker room, and the Nittany Lions coming out on fire once again to start the second half. I think a roughly 17 point victory sounds about right, with BSU threatening to score to pull within two scores near the end but the second string D coming up with another stop.

What’s the over/under on “Ball” jokes this week?—Dbridi

Probably a lot lower than it should be, knowing those of us here (and in the wider PSU fanbase).

besides being David Letterman’s alma mater....what else is Ball State known for?— kingkub

Honestly, I don’t think too much. I even googled “what is Ball State known for?” and Letterman didn’t even come up. Not to disparage the university or the team (it is a fine academic institution, and the football team returns a ton of starters from last year’s conference winner) - but I didn’t even remember it was located in Indiana until, like, five minutes ago.

How salty are you if you’re a Wisky fan and you watched Jack Coan light it up against FSU?swift_retribution

It sounds like they’re pretty salty, and probably saltier than they would’ve been had they pulled out the win against Penn State.

I know that the PSU fanbase is no barometer, but there are still folks on this here site pointing to Will Levis lighting it up over Lousiana Monroe and saying this shows that the wrong Penn State QB transferred, even though Sean Clifford had a pretty darn good second half (and didn’t turn the ball over) versus a perenially top five defense, on the road, to manage the win in Madison. Never forget that the grass is always greener, and because all fans aren’t privy to everything each coaching staff sees in practice day in and out, there always have been and always will be folks who think the coaches are wrong.

Death, taxes, yadda yadda yadda.

Losing Brooks for the 1st half might be a blessing in disguise, no? Luketa took over in the middle against Wisky, but I’m hoping Katshir (or anyone else) gets a shot. We need to figure out the depth chart and Luketa needs reps at DE— L.O.T.M.

Ellis Brooks being ejected is not a blessing in disguise. It’s dumb, but it’s the letter of the rule. He is our best option at MLB, and though Luketa can be serviceable as his back up, it’s always better to have your best options actually out on the field.

Luketa got over 50 snaps at DE on Saturday even with Brooks being ejected, which is more than he might get being at DE in most other games this year (and against a tougher offensive front than he’ll see until October). He’ll get his reps, it’s fine. But ejecting Brooks is still dumb.

Will Phil Trautwein cobble things together on this o-line through the next two weeks by the time we get to Auburn?—Parepidemos

I think we’ll see a vastly improved front this week. And seeing as the Wisconsin defensive line might be the best (and weirdest, with all the stunts they run) line this offense sees all season, I think all of the calls denigrating the o-line for their performance in Madison are a little shortsighted. They only let up 2 sacks on the day, and Clifford had time to throw most times - a lot of the throwaways he had were because the wideouts couldn’t get open down field. He had much better pocket presence this week, imo, and wasn’t hearing the footsteps that Graham Mertz clearly was - a testament to the PSU defense, no doubt, but also some credit should go to the offensive line, and Mike Yurcich’s play calling.

Plus, we actually lined Clifford up under center two yards out from the goal line, handed the ball off to Noah Cain, and *Cain scored a touchdown*! Against Wisconsin’s front seven! Who no doubt KNEW the run was coming, because we had almost entirely offensive linemen in the game! That definitely doesn’t happen behind last year’s offensive line, and likely wouldn’t have been a score in any recent year (save perhaps 2017).

Does the B1G Office of Referees or whatever review the officiating of each week’s games? I’d like a plausible explanation regarding the punt interference calls as well as more focus on holding.PSU_Lions_84

I think this is a valid question, and one we ask ourselves almost every year (but typically, it’s after John O’Neill-refereed games). The holding calls are no doubt home-cooking, similar to what OSU gets in the ‘shoe, but the punt interference calls are still baffling to me. Those were bang-bang plays, and since there’s no halo rule anymore (and the returner ACTUALLY CAUGHT THE BALL), I don’t understand how it was interference. Since, by definition, interference is obstruction, and he caught the ball - it’s not like with pass interference, you can decline the penalty because the ball was caught. So dumb.

When Fleming portals from anO$U (and he will), do we make a run at him or has he burned that bridge? I asked this in one of the gameday threads, but I want to get your take.Tmbgiants_3

I don’t think we want him. That ship has sailed, for good reason - it seems like he never was serious about giving us a shot. We have two top twenty receivers ready to sign as part of the 2022 recruiting class; that coupled with Jahan Dotson being among the country’s best, and I think we’re fine without Fleming. Godspeed, young man, and best of luck I guess (unless you’re up against us in the future).

Follow up Flemming question: How bad would the hand-wringing be here at BSD if Flemming had chosen PSU and the coaches decided he is fairly far down the depth chart as what has happened at OSU. Would the folks here be blaming the coaches and if so, why aren’t those same folks criticizing the OSU coaches for not having him ready. BMAN13

Folks here would absolutely be blaming the coaches (that’s what they did when Justin Shorter left for Florida, despite the fact that he’s had very little impact on their offense). Those same folks aren’t criticizing the OSU coaches likely because those folks don’t follow OSU that closely to know the difference...and those who do know that OSU has a stacked WR room (including last year’s #1 wide receiver recruit in Emeka Egbuka) so they’re probably comfortable with reloading and rebuilding.

For teams like Ohio State and Alabama, a five-star recruit being an ultimate miss isn’t a huge deal, because they get so many of them. For a team like Penn State, it stands out more because we have fewer five stars. That might change in the future, but right now, it is what it is.

Has there been any discussion on the possible additions to the BIG XII?

UCF, Houston, BYU & Cincy? I think it is good for those teams to try & take the step to next level. It may or may not work out, but to their credit, they’re giving it a go.EagleLionSly

Well, what a prescient question, since Cincinnati petitioned to join the Big Twelve this week after you asked! I think Cincy & UCF make a lot of sense, and bring a lot more to the conference than they otherwise would have. I’m not sold necessarily on Houston or BYU, but a team like Memphis might make some sense (new tv market, after all).

Last night i ate some pulled pork sandwiches, today I was going to finish it up but had no buns other than hotdog buns….so I used them….so the question is am I still eating pulled pork sandwiches or is it something entirely new?joey.taylor.jt

Yes, it is still a sandwich. It’s not necessarily the bun that makes the sandwich - it’s what’s between the bread. I don’t think a hamburger is a sandwich, either, and obviously a hot dog isn’t and whoever says otherwise is just wrong.

Is a Taco a sandwich? Apparently, the well has run dry at Global Taco Bell HQ in different ways to sell cheap “Mexican” fare so I ask the ever knowing dais of BSD if it qualifies as a sandwich? It’s meat, toppings and ‘bread’ such as it is.

If so, who will be first to duplicate? Sheetz or Wawa?—mbailey71

Lol no, a taco is not a sandwich. Just because something has a flour or corn-based carb encasing its innards, doesn’t make it a sandwich.

And you can already get tacos at Sheetz, FYI. Not sure about Wawa (but Sheetz’s breakfast tacos are delightfully awful).

What is the most underrated game day snack food? I’m going with nacho cheese dip. It’s not glamorous, but you add that to your typical array of snacks and suddenly everything has new life.— Succss With Honor Always

Our friend Nick Blonde on this site has a penchant for a nice olive spread at tailgates, and I think that classes up the joint and always provides a nice counterbalance to a good meat and cheese tray.

We always have a few staples at our tailgates, though, like sweet nuts, burnt kielbasa, and the aforementioned olives. I’m not a big eater before and during games (I get anxious stomach) but it’s nice to have that around.

What is your stance on cooking with a recipe verses cooking without a recipe? I am firmly on team let’s just wing it and see what happens.Gerry Dincher

I’m a baker at heart, and baking is different than cooking in that if you go off-recipe, you can really mess stuff up and make it unedible. So generally, I like to follow recipes - unless it’s a staple that I make continuously (like mashed potatoes, or french toast), then I never follow a recipe. I’m more than likely to follow a recipe practically to the T the first time I make something, then switch it up on subsequent cookings; the things I find most helpful in recipes, though, aren’t necessarily spices and all ingredients (which I’m more than willing to sub), but rather temperatures and times of cooking. Those steps are key, and can easily be overlooked.

Disposing of food scraps: what is the best ecological way?

Through a sink garbage disposal or in the trash (presuming that one does not have the ability to create a compost pile)? One takes the food into the water supply directly and strains the water treatment plant, and the other requires transportation, labor hours, and a dump.—48-14

Your presumption is key, because obviously the best way is to compost. But I’m so lazy, I just use the garbage disposal all the time (probably more than I should).

I just saw the trailer for the new Matrix movie. It’s supposed to come out around Christmas. New Matrix & new Top Gun, what’s next, a new Beetlejuice?— EagleLionSly

At risk of going very “old man Euler” on you all, I’m so sick of these retreads and making a sequel (or, adding onto a trilogy) literal decades after the original is over. Yes, I’ll probably watch both. No, I won’t like myself after; there are oodles of talented writers and creators in Hollywood and around the world, why can’t they come up with original ideas??

/logs off to watch Avengers for the thirtieth time

Do you really think muggles and wizards get together that often?

Arthur Weasley had no idea how escalators work and has zero muggle money, and he’s a pretty open minded guy. Weren’t Hagrid and McGonagall in shock that Dumbledore would give Harry to a muggle family in the first place, never mind the Dursley’s? Personally I think its an oversight in Rowling’s canon that muggles and wizards really didn’t interact. I just don’t see them falling in love UNLESS its absolute love at first sight. Love must trump magic. Bonus question – can you name the only entirely wizarding village that has zero muggles?—PSU1979dude

There are a number of oversights in the HP canon, tbh. This is one logical fallacy amongst many you’ve pointed out - there’s just got to be some modicum of suspension of disbelief when reading and watching them, after all.

And it’s Hogsmeade, obviously.

Why did it take me so long to discover Letterkenny? Follow up question: Why is it the best Canadian import ever?— Tmbgiants_3

Um I hate to reveal that I have yet to watch Letterkenny (I know, I KNOW). But I’d argue poutine is better than any Canadian tv show (even Schitt’s Creek).

Thoughts on the Applebees commercial? I enjoyed it. People having fun. I don’t get the backlash.— Liongame

I thought it was super dumb but I’m not going to, like, post about it (unless you ask me the question). Applebee’s isn’t fancy, in my opinion, and regarding the backlash, I haven’t really seen any myself. While I don’t think Applebee’s is fancy, and anyone who took me on a date there would probably get his butt kicked to the curb unless there was a joke involved, but far be it for me to dictate how others live their lives. If folks want to go to Applebee’s, and write and dance to a song about how it’s fancy, so be it!

Let people live their lives and be happy, provided it doesn’t impact you living yours! And people enjoying Applebee’s (and that commercial) has literal zero impact on my life, so you do you, boo.

why are bra cups measured in letters instead of volume? and why do they stop at D and just add more D’s instead of going to F, G, H—BMAN13

I know that this wasn’t really a question, but rather a facetious response to another comment on the thread, but any time I can rant about women’s clothing, I absolutely will.

The sizing of women’s clothing, and by extension women’s underwear, is absolutely abysmal. What is size 6 in one brand is ten in another, and 14 in a different one - all bought at the same mall (and some times, in the same store!). How do retailers and clothiers continue to get away with this? Because it makes them money.

Not everyone who purchases clothing tries it on before they buy it, and not all who buy clothes that don’t fit end up returning said ill-fitting clothes (and bras). If these retailers sell items based on inconsistent clothing sizes (instead of, say, waist and inseam measurements like much of men’s pants), they have the opportunity to sell more clothes because fits aren’t correct. There’s little to no backlash to this frustrating phenomenon, too, which means of course it’s going to continue on, unabated.

Paraphrased from my older son, HS senior.

We were talking to our ten year old about how I used to toss pennies at my wife’s 2nd floor apartment window when we’re dating when I would come by in the mornings so I wouldn’t wake her roommates. The older one only heard part of the conversation and chimed in with this question.

“Can you imagine not being able to just text someone and let them know you are there?”— Former_DC_Buck

It’s sometimes so hard to think back to a time where I had to have an atlas in my car to make sure I could get to an unknown place, or to go days or weeks without talking to my closest friends and family because we didn’t have a communication device with us at all times. It gives me a headache to think about how old it makes me feel to realize that I had my first cell phone 20 years ago. Sigh.

Is there a phrase or term that you thought had a completely different meaning that ended up causing embarassment?

For me it’s the term “elbow grease.” I thought elbow grease was a product you could buy in a store, like WD-40. My parents and grandparents refer to it repeatedly over the years. When I was about 20, I was trying to clean bug guts off the front of my car, I asked if there was a product that would get the job done easier. Once again, I was told elbow grease. I think I must have have flipped out or something. “How come we never have any?” Yada yada yada. I’m going to get some. Everybody burst out laughing. I still hear about it at family gatherings 34 years later.Scoop Dawg

This is hilarious to me, though I can’t figure out any of these in which I was wrong - I’m sure they exist, somewhere (especially when I was a precocious kid). I’m fascinated to hear more stories like this in the comments?