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BSD Mailbag 11.24.23

It’s the final mailbag of the regular season!

First, since there was no mail bag last week, do I get double BSD bucks?—kingkub

I, like so many folks, tend to try to stay offline after PSU football losses (pretty rare the last few years) - and that, coupled with a vertigo spell that knocked me out on November 12 made me completely forget to put up a post asking for mailbag questions before Rutgers! I’m rectifying it this week, and we’ll have

If we end up in the Peach Bowl, who do you want to play?—kingkub

I had a dream last season that I became a Tulane fan, so I’m probably one of the few that would be happy with a Green Wave matchup.

Honestly, I’d take a matchup with anyone in the Peach Bowl since it would just be something different! Most predictors are now expecting us in the Fiesta Bowl now, and while that wouldn’t be horrible since the Penn State record in that game is pretty darn good, I’d like something a little bit different.

Can anybody confirm or deny the rumor that Yurcich had trouble getting his belongings out of his office? Apparently he had no idea what to do with a loaded box.—InflammableDumpster

Rumor has it Chip is getting fired any day now. Do you think he gets a new head coach gig right away or has to slum it as a OC? If the latter, if you’re CJF, you making a call to him?

Does your answer change if Drew Portals?—JayMPSU

While I do think Chip Kelly will be in the booth either calling plays as an offensive coordinator next year or calling games for the new big ten (maybe even the BTN), I would be very, very surprised if it was for Penn State. There are apparently rumors circulating that Dan Mullen is a candidate for the PSU OC job, so I don’t think Franklin is opposed to going the former head coach route (since it worked out well on the defensive side), but I do not think it will be Chip Kelly.

Which, with my betting advice, probably means we should all invest in visors.

How do you feel about Iowa winning the Big 10 Championship game? Say on the order of 6-4??—Jiminsantafe

It depends on who the Big Ten East’s representative is. If it’s Ohio State, I’d like them to win out and actually play well in the playoff and I’m not sure why and please don’t send me weird stuff in the mail because I actually typed that out on a Penn State blog.

If it’s Michigan I would like them to lose to Iowa 3-2.

Here are the Top Ten all-time winningest FBS football programs:

1 - Michigan: 1,000 wins

2 - Ohio State: 963

3 - Alabama: 962

4 - Texas: 945 (tie)

4 - Notre Dame: 945 (tie)

6 - Oklahoma: 942

7 - Penn State: 928

8 - Nebraska: 917

9 - Georgia: 878

10 - USC: 874 (tie)

10 - Tennessee: 874 (tie)

Since the year 2000, only two of those programs have not made an appearance in either the BCS or CFP: PSU and Tennessee. Since neither will make the CFP this year, which program makes the new playoffs first? (FWIW, the next three winningest programs: LSU, Auburn and Clemson, have already made either the BCS or CFP.)—Smee

In looking at both squads’ schedules for 2024, I think Penn State, depending on who returns next year, is more likely to make the playoffs. Tennessee has an out of conference game against NC State at a neutral site, but their conference schedule includes trips to Arkansas, Athens and Oklahoma (in the Sooners’ first season in the SEC), and home games against Alabama, Florida, and Kentucky.

That’s compared to PSU’s schedule that includes an OOC game at WVU and conference games hosting Ohio State and Washington, and traveling to USC, but on paper with these teams it seems far more doable.

Of course, both teams play Kent State so maybe that’s the barometer.

What should State do at 125. After wrestling 2 events Robert Howard has not looked good and Braeden Davis has looked pretty good. Do we burn the freshman’s redshirt? The rest of the team looks loaded with All-Americans.—wvlion

It’s too early for us to make the call for Davis just yet but I think the option’s gotta be on the table. We likely won’t know until part of the way through January. I would like to see Robbie turn things around and shake the rust off, since he’s still coming off injury. Davis definitely has a lot of upside, no doubt, but Robbie Howard has the inside track and it’s far too early to say he can’t make AA.

What’s the deal with B1G men’s soccer? Nine B1G women’s teams qualified for the Women’s NCAA Tournament (including PSU), but only one B1G men’s team (Indiana) qualified for the Men’s Tournament. Sure, there are a few less schools in the men’s tourney — 48 vs 64 in the women’s — but that doesn’t explain a nine-to-one difference. Wazzup?—Smee

The ACC has something crazy like 8 teams in the tournament this year - which makes the fact that the Big Ten only has one team in out of over 70 even crazier (especially leaving out a team that made it to the finals of the tournament and lost by one, to a team that would’ve made it in without the AQ bid). I’m sure there’s some justification having to do with RPI or something else mathy. but it smells fishier than that to me.

Neeli Bendapudi brought plenty of her compatriots (buddies, pals, cronies?!) with her to Penn State. Given their current respective CFP situations, did she make a mistake by hiring Pat Kraft and not bringing Josh Heird with her instead?—Smee

I’m pretty sure that you’re being at least a little facetious, but an AD’s job is more about bringing in money and hiring effective coaches than it is about getting specific teams to the post-season tournament. The biggest barometer so far for Kraft will be how the hiring of Mike Rhoades ends up looking - and what happens with womens basketball if the team that has shown such promise so far this year ends up backsliding.

Which type of weather is the worst?

Which type of weather is the best?—Gerry Dincher

I can deal with almost any type of weather as long as I’m inside and don’t have to go out anywhere (and I work from home, so that’s most of the time). I particularly love snow storms during the day when I can sit with a cup of coffee and read, while occasionally taking a walk through the falling snow.

The ones I hate are the violent storms, like derechos or ones that bring tornadoes, as nothing good can come from that weather (at least the way I see it).

Very random question but because you’re all varied peoples of culture, you might be able to help. I’ve been entertaining the idea of getting a case of wine (or more if it’s advised) from the year my daughter was born, with the thought being that a bottle could be opened to mark major milestones. But I know nothing about wine, so 1) is this even a thing and 2) if it is, I’m sure it’s not just advisable to use any wine, so where would I start?—Succss With Honor Always

I’d probably go with bottles of liquor rather than wine, as it’s much more predictable as it ages (many wines are hit or miss, and some wines are susceptible to corking or spoiling through no fault of anyone). But if you do go through with wine, definitely get something red and drier. And though there still might be some stigmas associated with wines that have screwtops, they actually don’t speak to the quality of the wine anymore and they’re much better at preserving a wine’s quality, especially over time.

Mr. Dincher has been doing a fine job with the food-related questions during this season’s mailbag, so I don’t want to try and steal any thunder here, but is there a type of food/cuisine that you either didn’t like earlier in life, or just never had earlier in life, that you love now? I am 53 and never had Thai food until I was about 40, and I’ve basically spent that last 13 years of my life wondering where it had been my whole life.—LTFT

I didn’t know I liked cooked carrots until I went to college, because no one else in my family liked them so I never tried them. I also didn’t try Indian food until college, which I also love now (and is one of if not my favorite styles of food).

Fresh Cranberry sauce or the abomination in a can?—mbailey71

The canned stuff is good in a pinch, especially for leftovers, but the real stuff is what I truly love. I’ll pick it ten times out of ten if I have both as an option.

Hamburger Helper:

A) Fantastic

B) Disgusting

I am solidly in the A camp–LTFT

I’ll eat many different kinds of Hamburger Helper. It’s not my favorite, but it’s not disgusting. So, C, somewhere in between?

Re: Hallmark Channel.

I read this quote from one of their actors: “The fundamental storylines and equations are starting to change. Becoming more inclusive, embracing a broader range of content and subject matter to be more reflective of real life.”

Are you still a fan of the channel? Have you noticed the change and has it improved your watching experience?—48-14

I still watch! And I still have a spreadsheet where I review and rank all of them. I’ve definitely noticed more diversity, both in cast and in storyline (and last year there was even a true romcom, with a sequel this year!).

I created a spreadsheet and gave a presentation at work in an employee resource group about my love for Hallmark movies, and part of that love is absolutely the predictable nature of the stories and the fact that they almost always meet my expectations. The biggest expectation that I have when it comes to these Christmas movies isn’t about the cast, or even the typical romance tropes or storyline beats that nearly every single one of these movies hit - it’s the fact that, in the end, everyone is together, has learned at least a little something, and is happy. Those haven’t changed despite any other content changes (and definitely won’t be impacted by a broader range of subject matter or content) and likely will never change—thankfully.

These movies are about escapism, for me and millions of others, and part of that is knowing that there’ll be a happily ever after even when this world is wonky and there aren’t happy ever afters in it for everyone in real life. We’ll always have Hallmark to make us feel better!

Happy holidays and Merry Christmas, everyone!

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