Saturday, November 17, 2007

Can PSU audition for Extreme Makeover?

I'll be the first to admit that it looks like I'm overreacting after a pathetic lost in the Spartans but hear me out. Paterno is really looking like a complete buffoon lately.

I'll start with the team's character. It's the most embarrassing team I've ever had to root for. I hate having to come back home to the 'hahas' about how the latest Nittany Lion has just been arrested or charged with something. JoePa took a stand, or at least seemed to, when ordering the team to clean up the stadium after home football games. He also told the powers that be at PSU that the players involved in the infamous Meridian Apartment incident in April would lose playing time.

To start, the football players didn't clean the entire stadium. I'm no mathematician but I'm sure there's at least 100 students with the team that can help clean. For that many people to clean up (what I've heard to be) a quarter to half of the stadium is a joke, especially after JoePa tried to insinuate that the team would clean the entire stadium. Other student organizations cleaning the stadium with the football team were instructed not to say anything about the football team. I wonder why... Now about playing time. The two key players in the Meridian fight, Anthony Scirrotto and Chris Baker saw absolutely ZERO deduction in playing time. Scirrotto started every single game this season and Baker started a bunch too...until he got charged with yet another crime. The latest incident that occurred outside the HUB the night after the Iowa game is the latest black eye to the program. The Daily Collegian said reports had roughly 15 football players involved in the fight. Why is it that everytime some messes with a football player, that football player has to call the whole team to come and beat the crap out of somebody? Seriously...grow up. I know you're a band of brothers and whatnot but this is just pathetic. Ironically, Chris Baker is the one who called up the players, and in due time they arrived. Once they got there, they allegedly pummeled and stomped on the victim as he lay on the ground. Chris Bell apparently also thought it was necessary to jump off a chair and elbow drop the guy.

A little sidebar comment here but Chris, are you retarded? One, for actually doing what you did but two, you think that's really healthy for your elbow?

Either way, Baker has all but proved he's a no good goon that only sheds negative light on the Penn State football program. Paterno needs to take the hard line approach and kick Baker, LB Navorro Bowman, and anyone else potentially charged in beating up this guy off the team. This year, PSU is more known for off the field embarrassments than on the field accomplishments (not that there were really any of those to begin with). Anyone who is involved in any sort of violent crime should be swiftly booted off the team. If Scirotto gets convicted once his trial starts, I fully expect him to be off the team. If not, it's just one more example of Paterno sacrificing face for big contributer to the team.

One more gripe at the character of the team. I'm still irritated with how the team treated the fans after senior day (v. Purdue). After the game, Terrell Golden was the only player to come to the student section and thank the fans/students. Everyone else just went into the locker room. We even won the game and they just bailed. Arguably the best student section in the nation, that stands there game after game in support...and they get nothing, not even a wave in return. Sad. Just sad.

Since I've already used up a bunch of space talking about the character of the team, I'll keep it brief with the play. I'm more embarrassed by the play of this team than by the play of the 4-7 team of 2004. At least then, we knew we were a year away and the offense had few weapons. This year, we have plenty of talent on defense, but can't even make the big tackle. On offense, Morelli shouldn't even be starting. He's proven time and time again that he's dumb as rocks. All you have to do is look at the last two drives in today's game. Hey, let's throw a 3-yard pass from our own 20 over the middle of the field with 10 seconds left and no timeouts! Maybe the guys were covered downfield but are you serious? At least heave it up there. The 21 point collapse was terrible too. The Lions showed no character on the field and deserved to lose with the attitude they showed...that I blame on the coaching staff.

Galen Hall, please leave. Jay Paterno, please leave. Joe Paterno, unless you can actually motivate your team to play well and teach your players how to stay out of trouble (or at least discipline them appropriately), please leave.

I'm not calling for Paterno to step down but I'm damn close. The image this team portrays on and off the field is nothing short of pathetic and I don't see any change in sight...yet.

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