Sandy Barbour has done the unthinkable. Her actions have inspired me to write something positive about the Penn State Athletic Department. Hold on to your hats because it’s about our football non-conference scheduling. In other words, it’s the post I never thought I would be lucky enough to write.
Ever since the news of Penn State’s home/home with Auburn broke this morning, I’ve been checking calendars to make sure it’s not somehow April 1st. For decades, I have begged our incompetent Athletic Directors to give us a unique and intriguing non-conference opponent. For decades, we’ve been stuck with retreads of our Independent days. In fact, after we play West Virginia in 2023, we will have played our ENTIRE 1988 schedule as non-conference games since joining the Big Ten. Have I mentioned how much I hate Tim Curley and Dave Joyner???
Auburn checks all the boxes I have wished for in a non-conference foe. They’re a traditional power. They’re from a part of the country we rarely visit (although we have played Alabama quite often). They’re very likely to be a Top 25 team when we meet. Most important, they’re a NEW opponent. Barbour finally broke the Miami-Notre Dame-Alabama cycle of “marquee” games. Those teams are much more appealing than our undercard match-ups (Pitt, Boston College, Virginia, Syracuse…), but the frequency with which we played them was frustrating, considering how often they were on our Independent schedules. Auburn represents a significant change in scheduling philosophy and I couldn’t be happier.
Well, I could be, but I won’t let that get in the way of heaping praise on my favorite Penn State Athletic Director of my lifetime.
I don’t have a concrete Top Ten list of Wishful Opponents. I would consider it more of a fluid list in which 4 permanently reside.
4. Boise State
Next Bunch (No Order)
These teams fall into the “Next Bunch” category, but are relegated to a second tier because I have been to these campuses before. I have to give a slight edge to new places.
Final Group (No Order)
Idaho (I have a Kibbie Dome fetish)
At the absolute worst, Auburn rates as the #15 team I want Penn State to have a home/home with. Admittedly, they would probably be several spots higher had I not been on their campus before and if we hadn’t just played at Alabama. The bottom line is this: Sandy Barbour did a fantastic job of shutting me up with this scheduling announcement.
I cannot wait to take on the Plainsmen
Bama’s Little Brother
After a few years on life support, the doggs are finally being put down. Much like the optimism that accompanies an upcoming football season, every August I believe that this is the year we start writing the blog again. Every September, I realize that August Rowlff was dumb. Every November, I get annoyed by how bad we are. Then basketball season starts and…well…
The bottom line is this- no more JoePa’s Doghouse. So, I’m going out like Howard Beale. In the next few weeks, I’m going to tell you what about college football I’m mad as Hell about.
Goddamn Neutral Site Games
College football has the greatest pageantry and the widest array of traditions of any sport. Why deny opposing fans the opportunity to experience what makes your school/campus/town unique? Wisconsin-LSU should have been a special exchange of two of the best venues the sport has to offer. Instead, fans got treated to a corporate mega dome in Arlington and a wannabe college stadium/town.
What do places like Atlanta, DC, or Charlotte have in common with most ACC or SEC schools? Very little. So why would their fans want to travel there? Why would fans of northern teams want to travel to places that they frequent for business or layovers on said business trips? Bigger cities may be easier to get to, but they’re NFL cities, not college towns. What place do they have in college football? You can keep those venues. Give me a reason to travel to Athens, Chapel Hill, or Norman and I’ll find a way to get there.
My doggs and I have been to many away games, both Big Ten and non-conference (although we’re running out of unique non-cons, you piece of crap PSU Athletic Department!!!). Everywhere we’ve been***, we’ve been welcomed with open arms. Fans have invited us to tailgates, gone out of their way to drive us around town, bought us drinks, and shown us a tremendous time. Pellagate has always made it a point to return the favor as best we can. Do you think that kind of congeniality exists in bars and tailgates at a neutral site game?
(***- everywhere but Notre Dame. Those assholes vandalized our rental car. They also flooded their town with beat women and douchebags while we were there. Unless that’s how South Bend normally looks…)
The next time I have the desire to tailgate in asphalt as far as the eye can see, pay outrageous ticket prices for a sterile dome, and vacate everything that makes college football so special, I’m going to attend a neutral site game.
Sadly, that might be my only chance to see Penn State play a decent non-conference opponent.
Unless you’ve been living in a spacious alcove without wifi for the past year, you’ve probably been as jacked up about Fuller House as I have been. It had been far too long since the Tanner family has taught me new life lessons. Thanks to the brilliant folks at Netflix, we are once again wondering “whatever happened to predictability…”
It's that wonderful time of the year when footballs are in the air, Oktoberfests are in the hand, and deli meats are in the other hand. Normally I try to inject some humor to these posts, but this is going to be of the slow burn variety. In other words, check back in December when all my predictions look ridiculous.
Am I Doing This To Jinx the SEC?
9-4 with losses to Ohio State, Michigan State, Northwestern, and San Diego State
Gator Bowl win over Arkansas
Am I Predicting This To Reverse-Jinx Us Into a Better Record?
Overrated teams (besides the entire SEC)
Baylor will have 3 or more regular season losses
Stanford will finish 7-5
As will Wisconsin
ESPN falls over itself talking up a 2-loss SEC West team.
The Pac 12 South will be a better division than the SEC West, but no one will hear anyone say it on tv.
Tennessee gets its 38th verbal before October 1st
Brian Kelly continues to get away with murdering a kid.
Cody Kessler throws for 400 yards on Tom Bradley’s defense.
It’s truly sad when you play a team that is so lousy, so irrelevant, that you can’t even muster hatred. That’s right, the Temple Owls have single-handedly sapped me of all my usual opening game enthusiasm. There is one thing that is worse than HATE, and that’s APATHY.
As a kid, the calendar flipping to August meant: “Oh no! Summer vacation is almost over!” As a college student, the calendar flipping to August meant: “Sweet! I get to go back to school soon!” As a working adult, the calendar flipping to August initially meant: “Damn! I wish I was going back to school soon!” Now, it means one thing: football dreams.
Since I only dusted off the ol Doghouse a few weeks ago, I’ve already missed a few football dreams. Last night’s was zany enough to prompt me to post start posting them.
Main characters: Me, my dad, @JSchnauzer, @psuBarton
Setting: Baton Rouge, LA
I am thrust into a situation where I have to get my picks in to a tv host who is at the LSU-BYU game in Tiger Stadium. Complicating matters is the knowledge that the Penn State game is on shortly. My father and I pull up to LSU’s campus and it’s a ghost town. We follow “Football traffic” signs to a patch of land overlooking an enormous natural amphitheater. Immediately, I see the guy I need to submit my picks to, but he is very far away. As we get to the edge of the bluff, we pay $1 each to rent inflatable alligators to slide down the hillside. At the bottom, the tv host runs over to me. “Great news! They’re showing the Penn State game inside the stadium. Here are your tickets; you’re all set.”
Just as my father and I get inside Tiger Stadium, I get a text from @Jschnauzer. It says: “You have got to see The Chocolate Room here. It’s incredible.” We weaved through the people as though we knew exactly where to go. As we stood underneath an arch, @Jschnauzer and @psuBarton waved us over to where they were standing. “Look at that!” @psuBarton exclaimed. They pointed to their right. Behind a glass wall, there were several people making various forms of chocolate. The one they pointed out was feeding ingredients into a massive hand cranked device. The device itself was shaped like a football lineman in a 3-point stance. It was wearing a Florida Gators uniform. As the guy turned the crank, nonpareils emerged from the ass of the UF lineman. They had purple and gold sprinkles on them. The next guy on the assembly line put a handful into a box which was then labeled, “Everyone has a little Tiger in them.”
Then I woke up.
After a little hiatus, the All-Runco Team finally makes its triumphant return. As a reminder, the All-Runco honor is bestowed upon those individuals who have been in college forever. It is without a note of pomp and circumstance that I congratulate the following players whose true talent lies not in evading defenders on the gridiron, but sheepskin on the stage.
While the blog sat silent for nearly two years, we’ve amassed a tremendous amount of hatred. It’s really not healthy to let that fester in one’s system, so we thought it would be a good idea to finally let it out.
This only represents the teams that we hate the most in college football. Think of it as a handy guide for the upcoming season. Perhaps the noon slate of games looks like a dud one particular Saturday. No worries. Just pull up this poll and hop aboard our bandwagon of hate. Soon you’ll be old and bitter just like us!
1. Notre Dame
Always and forever
You counted right. (No one hates Vanderbilt)
15. Ohio State
Combine the arrogance of Michigan and the scruples of an SEC team and you have the Buckeyes
Put it this way, if something makes Jim Delany happy, we hate it
Get off our damn schedule!!!
18. Florida State
Aside from beating Florida, there is no reason to like this band of gangsters
19. Miami (FL)
Dennis Erickscum and his band of undisciplined thugs cost us a national championship with their piss-poor conditioning in the 1995 Orange Bowl
A mainstay in this poll as long as that miserable puke Tim Beckman is still their coach
Those annual Iowa State losses really help the B1G’s perception…
22. Syracuse, West Virginia, Pitt, Boston College, Virginia (tie)
As long as these boring teams exist, our out-of-conference schedule will continue to be pathetic
Still shaking our heads over Christian Wilkins
They’re to thank for the wave of hideous uniforms sullying this once tradition-friendly sport.
Pick up the damn phone and offer us a 3-for-1 so we can travel to the Kibbie Dome!!!
If you’re in the mood to get sick to your stomach, I recommend googling other teams’ upcoming non-conference schedules.
Much like instant replay, soccer, and Pirates first basemen, the topic of non-conference scheduling really riles me up. In the words of Dennis Miller, “I don’t want to get off on a rant here, but…”