It's that time of the year again - time to look into my blue and white
crystal ball in hopes of securing a glimpse of what lies ahead for the Nittany Lions in 2009.
Let's see now ...
n With Daryll Clark nicked up, the Lions move to a single-wing formation against USC, using Derrick Williams at quarterback, and lose the Rose Bowl, 23-19. But, hey, the parade was fun.
n After several teams with one loss complain about the lack of a true playoff system, the NCAA decides to institute a new one in which NCAA president Myles Brand throws a few names in a hat and says, "eeneemeeneemyneemo."
n Aaron Maybin and Jared Odrick, apparently ticketed for the NFL's first round, confirm they're bypassing a final year of eligibility.
n Disappointed over Penn State's reluctance to designate him as assistant head coach, Tom Bradley retires.
n Russ Rose wonders if it's OK for him to spend part of his day coaching from home.
n During a Blue-White game practice session open to the media, Joe Paterno bumps Tommy Venturino out of the driver's seat and speeds up his golf cart, narrowly missing several reporters. "Darn," he says.
n Despite losing hundreds of customers to various satellite companies, Atlantic Broadband still hasn't secured The Big Ten Network.
n In a Daily Collegian interview, the Nittany Lion mascot, fresh from a DUI charge, expresses remorse at his transgression and agrees to lead counseling sessions. Several classes fill up in less than an hour.
n Sue Paterno is seen chasing an ESPN truck away from the family home's driveway on McKee Avenue.
n To create more ticket demand, Tim Curley reluctantly confirms that the entire men's basketball non-conference schedule, which includes two more Sunday games and a matchup with New Jersey Tech, will be played at Rec Hall.
n Dr. Wayne Sebastanielli is seen screaming at JoePa after the latter tries an onside kick in an August practice.
n JoePa jogs out of the tunnel to a standing ovation moments before the Nittany Lions' opener against Akron.
n Pat Devlin throws for 400 yards in his Delaware debut against West Chester.
n JoePa makes more national news by coaching the entire game against Eastern Illinois from his back porch.
n The Lions are 9-0 when Ohio State visits but ranked no higher than No. 5, in part because of their schedule.
n Rene Portland, now coaching Indiana, returns to the Jordan Center to polite applause. Must say: She looks good in red.
n Penn State, at 11-0, loses its bid for an unbeaten season at Michigan State because nobody packed the sideline heaters.
n Sean Lee wins the Butkus Award.
n Penn State fans, readers of this column and JoePa himself are extended best wishes for a happy, healthy 2010.
Rudel can be reached at 946-7527 or firstname.lastname@example.org.