Disbelief, anger, passion, redemption are all words that can describe the 2010-2011 Pittsburgh Steelers football season and, more importantly, the season for quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.
While the story of the tumultuous offseason of Big Ben is widely known, it was how he handled himself during the team's Super Bowl run that has defined him once again.
While nobody will ever know what happened in Georgia, how Ben handled himself in the public eye had been troublesome to many members of Steeler Nation.
Like many athletes these days, it was the sense of entitlement and the bigger-than-the-world attitude that overcame Roethlisberger.
While nobody can condone actions done in the past, loyal fans around the country have forgiven Ben as he has led the Steelers to yet another Super Bowl appearance.
We are taught that forgiveness is the best tool for humanity - that when a person does wrong, one should forgive them for his or her wrongdoing, and the same goes for Roethlisberger.
The fact that he realized what he had done wrong, lived up to his mistakes, accepted his punishment like a man, and took steps to change his life should be admired and is more than some others would do.
Through interactions with fans, interviews, and opinions of many teammates, coaches, and family members, it is hard to believe that the new Big Ben is not here to stay.
The picture of Big Ben leading the Steelers to victory with a broken nose and a bandaged foot has defined this season. It is a man leading a franchise while overcoming not only physical injuries but those injuries his character suffered in the past.
Characteristics of selfishness and self-entitlement have been replaced with those of thankfulness and leadership.
When the day comes when I have children, I would be proud if they looked up to an athlete like Roethlisberger, one who has had demons but through faith and looking deep inside has begun to reshape his public image and become a better person.
No matter what the outcome of the Super Bowl is, Steelers fans should be thankful and proud that Big Ben is their quarterback.
PSU has a team, not a program
Yes, Penn State is playing good basketball this past month and a half. It took 3 years for the Penn State players to play like Division I players, but how do they lose to Maryland, Ole Miss, Virginia Tech and Maine?
How good is the Big Ten? Since we can now watch the other teams on the Big Ten Network, it sure seems questionable how they rank in the Top 25.
Michigan State was ranked No. 2 in the preseason. They have looked awful. Wisconsin couldn't hit the basket during the last 20 minutes against Penn State and ended up shooting 32 percent. Is this what you would expect from a 15th-ranked team? Minnesota is totally up and down and certainly doesn't look like a Top 25 team.
Now back to Penn State. Yes, it is nice to see them win, but once again the program looks poor.
The biggest problem with them winning is that Tim Curley will extend Ed DeChellis' contract for the third time. Yes, extend the contract. After eight years, what kind of program does Penn State have?
All you have to do is look at the bench and see what is coming back next year. That is what defines a program. Yes, Ohio State is No. 1 at the present time, but they too have built their record through the Big Ten with many close wins.
They are very fortunate they don't play in the Big East.
Player's actions disturbing
My wife and I attended a boys basketball game between Bedford and Tussey Mountain last Monday night.
What I witnessed was tragic and most of all uncalled for. I saw a young man get brutally elbowed in the face by a player from Bedford. The impact was so forceful the player from Tussey Mountain had teeth knocked out, and a plastic surgeon had to be called in at the hospital to put over 30 stitches in his mouth.
I understand basketball is somewhat of a contact sport. I also believe you should be coached not to throw elbows.
As a father and a grandfather who has played basketball and been a coach, I hope I have instilled in my children that you do not do things like this to another human being - sports or otherwise.
I would want them to represent their school, their state and their country in a civilized manner. For those who disagree, it's your right, but I feel sorry for that.
Six Mile Run