WE ARE ... PENN STATE!
We are ... One of the great college football programs of all time.
We are not ... One of the elite programs today -- proven by Saturday's 27-11 loss to No. 3 Alabama -- or of the past decade.
Mirror photo by Patrick Waksmunski
Derek Moye drops a pass against Alabama during Saturday’s loss.
We are ... Incredibly proud of our wonderful tradition.
We are not ... Satisfied with the constant underachievement shown by the program almost every year since the undefeated 1994 season.
We are ... A school with one of the greatest head coaches ever in Joe Paterno.
We are not ... A school that can avoid being held hostage by an 84-year-old coach who is so far past his prime that he's nowhere close to being one of the top coaches in the country anymore.
We are ... Seeing a living legend in Paterno showing incredible toughness and age-defying worth ethic by continuing to coach.
We are not ... Going to get any better as a program until our selfish, stubborn coach realizes he can't get the job done any longer and decides to retire.
We are ... Tremendously proud of our academic record, ability to stay out of trouble with the NCAA and JoePa's great integrity.
We are not ... Able to brag about our program's accomplishments on the field, so therefore we constantly have to bring up those intangibles to console ourselves from what's really going on in Happy Valley.
We are ... Able to beat up on teams that we should beat up on and brag about going 59-20 since 2005.
We are not ... Able to beat or in most cases even be competitive against great teams, having gone 0-9 against top-five competition and 3-12 against the top 10 since 2000.
We are ... Constantly talking about contending for a national championship every preseason.
We are not ... Even close to being the kind of program where that talk should be taken seriously.
We are ... Still clinging to what we accomplished in the 1980s, when we were a powerhouse and won two national titles in five seasons.
We are not ... Comfortable talking about how our last national title came a quarter-century ago, before most of the undergraduate students on our campus were even born.
We are ... A good defensive team this season, much better than a year ago, and that provides a lot of reasons for optimism.
We are not ... A program where the defense forces enough turnovers, blitzes enough or makes enough plays in the secondary to actually disrupt good offenses.
We are ... Still talking about a quarterback competition entering week three.
We are not ... Talking about two good quarterbacks, but more so which is the lesser of two evils between Rob Bolden and Matt McGloin.
We are ... Hopeful that Bolden can develop into a good quarterback if he gets all the playing time.
We are not ... Supremely confident that quarterbacks coach Jay Paterno can develop Bolden into anything more than what he is right now.
We are ... Liking Bolden's potential but still wondering if the team will have any success in the red zone with him at quarterback.
We are not ... Liking that Bolden has no touch whatsoever and throws fastballs on every pass, many badly off target.
We are ... Expecting the coaches to go with Bolden for the majority of the game this week against Temple.
We are not ... Going to throw McGloin under the bus -- which many fans want to do -- because until Saturday's disastrous 1-of-10 for no yards effort, he had outperformed Bolden at every turn.
We are ... Hearing talk that Derek Moye could be an NFL receiver.
We are not ... Seeing Moye make catches he absolutely must make to prove that he is a good college receiver, let alone a pro prospect.
We are ... Still wondering how in the world PSU's offense could be so disorganized that it had to burn three timeouts on its opening drive Saturday.
We are not ... Really all that surprised by the disorganization because, as has been pointed out time and time again, PSU's multi-person playcalling system is stupid.
We are ... Wondering why Jay Paterno is using baseball analogies to teach football plays, which he demonstrated in a video that's on ESPN.com.
We are not ... Off base in thinking that nepotism is the sole reason why Jay Paterno is the quarterbacks coach instead of Mike McQueary, the receivers coach who, you know, actually played quarterback to some degree of success instead of sitting on the bench his whole career.
We are ... Thinking running back Silas Redd looks like a future star.
We are not ... Surprised that Alabama's great defense made the necessary adjustments to shut down Redd after his impressive opening drive Saturday.
We are ... Hopeful this can still be a good season record-wise, somewhere around 9-3, with additional losses to Ohio State and Wisconsin.
We are not ... Going to be surprised if Big Ten newcomer Nebraska struggles with its brutal schedule between now and week 10 and then loses to PSU at Beaver Stadium.
We are ... Confident that a large portion of the Nittany Nation will be proud of a 9-3 record and argue that it's good enough.
We are not ... Of the opinion that 9-3 is EVER good enough for Penn State when it loses most or all of its big games and merely feasts on unranked teams.
We are ... Happy that PSU's fans repaid the favor from last year in Tuscaloosa by showing Alabama's fans a great time and being very classy Saturday.
We are not ... Expecting that to be the case for very many big-time opponents in the future at Beaver Stadium.
We are ... Glad to see so many passionate fans irate over Saturday's humbling loss and frustrated by all of the problems this program has.
We are not ... Happy to see Paterno's wonderful career end in this sad fashion, with him getting outcoached in every big game and ultimately losing each one of them.
Cory Giger is the host of "Sports Central" from 4 to 6 p.m. daily on ESPN Radio 1430 WVAM. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or @CoryGiger on Twitter.