There is an old saying - "Tough times never last, but tough people do."
We can say this about the true-grit seniors who are the backbone of the 2012 Penn State football team. Yes, some of those guys have roots going way back to their fathers who played football at PSU.
And then there are some who call themselves leaders but have no backbone to overcome adversity. People like Redd, Fortt and others thought only of themselves when their brothers needed them.
Coach O'Brien has seen tougher times in his own personal world and will not panic. He will right the ship and move on to bigger and better times with this Penn State program.
We all need to be patient, especially me.
I'm not sure if this is a mailbag or a therapy session, but thanks, as always, for your letter.
My anger has slowly subsided to a feeling of relief and joy.
It almost feels that this had to happen to allow O'Brien a true, clean break from Paterno. A normal transition would have led to more along the lines of what happened at other schools like Ohio State, Nebraska, Alabama and the like - decades of wandering in the desert looking for the coach that could get out from Paterno's shadow.
This coach won't have that problem.
He's going to weather the storm and come out the other side a winner. We are all going to be very happy in five or six years.
As for Joe, I have to say that a piece of my childhood died over the past nine months. The honor and integrity of his program was a constant. Whether he knew or not, whatever he said to Curley and Spanier, the death of his name is more tragic than the death of the man.
As for the season, I think we are going to shock some people. We are going to play with a purpose and focus that has been missing the past five years, and we will win some close games. I think this team has 10-2 written all over it. The losses are to Nebraska and Wisconsin.
A 10-2 record should make Bill O'Brien the unanimous choice as national coach of the year.
Happy to have football return.
PSU 25, Ohio 13. A late Ohio score makes it look close. Defense dominates, and Hodges gets a pick-6. McGloin is better but still is not top notch. Welcome to our next great RB: Belton 135 yards on 17 carries.
Curtis Dukes averaged 5.8 yards on 41 carries last year, yet he's listed no higher than third team. A secret weapon?
2012 could be our last competitive season for a while.
Fast start will be offset by lack of depth and tougher schedule in second half of season. 8-4 would be nice, 6-6 more likely.
You should spend some time with Steve Abrams.
Rudel vs. the oddsmakers:
Line: Penn State is a 6-point favorite.
Inside the line: Over-under is 44.5 ... Lions hit over just twice in 13 games last year ... Since 2007, vs. marquee opponents Ohio State, Tennessee and Virginia Tech, Bobcats went 0-4 but 2-1-1 vs. number ... In last 10 openers - all at home vs. Mid-American competition or below - PSU is 4-6 vs. line ... In last nine games vs. MAC, eight at home and one at Temple, Lions are 9-0 outright but just 2-7 vs. spot.
Prediction: Penn State 27, Ohio 13
Comment: Bobcats should be the meal of consolation.
Prediction record in 2011: 12-1
Penn State vs. line in 2011: 3-9-1
Prediction record vs. line in 2011: 4-8-1