Like more than a few Penn State fanatics, I pay what probably most sane people would consider way too much money - hundreds of dollars per game - for reserved parking in close proximity to Beaver Stadium on football Saturdays.
I once thought it was actually a good deal because it raises some much-needed money for Penn State, assures my wife's artificial knees a short walk to the stadium and guarantees us a great parking spot even if I arrive shortly before or after kickoff.
But all that changed on Saturday when Penn State officials, reacting to an unseasonable snowstorm, decided to close the grass lots surrounding the stadium, open the paved lots normally used for reserved parking to the general public more than four hours before kickoff for the Minnesota game and direct everybody else to remote parking areas, where shuttle buses would transport them to and from the game.
Because that was their ill-conceived battle plan, Penn State officials no doubt would dismiss my objections as the carping of a pampered individual who demands special treatment.
I contend that I pay quite a bit of money - the aforementioned hundreds of dollars per game - precisely so I get special treatment and am not forced to use remote parking areas and be shuttled to the stadium.
As all "Seinfeld" fans know, Penn State or anybody can take a reservation, but it's actually holding the reservation that really matters.
Penn State took my money and my reservation then decided to keep my money and ignore my reservation.
In making the unilateral decision to break its agreement with me and others with reserved parking spots, Penn State broke its word.
That's a sad but unfortunately accurate assessment to make about an institution of higher learning - not the kind of thing that should make anybody "Penn State Proud."
Robert L. Burke
Column lacks facts about MMA
Bob Trumpbour's guest column (Oct. 11) lacked most of the primary facts about Mixed Martial Arts and the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).
I been a martial arts instructor for nearly 25 years with experience including not only formal martial arts, but jui-jitsu and close-quarter combatives. MMA is by no means new; neither is the UFC.
In its very inception it lost money until sold to its current owners who placed Dana White in the presidency. The sport then began to skyrocket because White brought the best athletes from all over the world with a variety of different fighting styles and brought the public the most exciting sport currently in existence.
White also runs a squeaky-clean operation unlike what we see in boxing today. Where else will you find athletes which are cross trained in jui-itsu, judo,wrestling, boxing and a number of other fighting disciplines?
MMA and UFC competitors train hours daily in all of these disciplines to be successful. Watch a championship boxing match, then tune to a championship UFC match. The difference in the level of action is like day and night.
That is why millions are tuning in, and thousands are flocking to live MMA bouts.
Trumpbour is also wrong when he claims almost every form of brutality is allowed and he likens it to human cockfighting. I have to question if he truly knows the rules in any fashion.
The UFC and MMA have numerous rules in place to protect every fighter's safety. Any cut is examined for its extent of damage and location of the cut, if it presents the possibility of any serious damage to the fighter's safety, the fight is stopped.
I'm sure Trumpbour may have seen blood, but how many sports do we see blood drawn while competing? Boxing, hockey, football and rugby to name a few. Also these men are not just brawling, after thousands of hours of training, these are finely-honed athletes with incredible skills who never senselessly brawl. Even the referees are trained exceedingly well.
The sport has finally come to Pennsylvania, and the reception has been fantastic.
It has surpassed boxing in viewership and continues to grow in record numbers. I would urge Trumpbour to closely watch the next UFC and learn more about the entire sport and rules.
He may also want to focus on the incredible skill level of the combatants.
Thomas C. Schmitt
Too many half-truths about PSU card
Why isn't anyone fair about Penn State football schedule? Syracuse was 9-3 when the home-and- home series was scheduled, and Alabama was the one to beg out on PSU at the last moment.
Those facts are never mentioned by all the PSU haters out there. Only a bunch of half truths about the schedule.
PSU even got beat up for scheduling Oregon State last year as a less-than-adequate opponent for Alabama, only to see Oregon State be within one game of being the Pac-10 BCS representative.
This kind of talk only shows a total disdain for anything PSU. Sure the schedule is weak, and mentioning that isn't the problem. It's just that I have never heard anyone offer the explanations to why.