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Sports Columns

Finale reflects old-school series

UNIVERSITY PARK — If we don’t see a renewal of the Penn State-Pitt rivalry for years, decades, or even ever, those who were fortunate enough to witness Saturday’s last scheduled game between the neighboring schools were treated to a performance that did the series proud. Penn State won, ...

Rivalries can’t be interrupted

There’s plenty of buzz this week about the Penn State-Pitt series coming to an end again after it was resumed following a long break four years ago. Generations seem split on the issue, but that’s just because your perception of the world is based off your life experiences. For current ...

Suprisingly, defense was soft vs. Buffalo

For the sake of today’s debate, I’ll take the defense, which was supposed to be the team strength and may still be, we’ll see. But some issues surfaced against Buffalo that signaled a red flag. Buffalo kept the ball for 90 plays and 42-plus minutes. That’s hard to believe. So if ...

Running game issues need to get cleaned up

Quarterback Sean Clifford is tied for the team lead with 108 yards rushing through two games. That’s … not a good thing for Penn State. Yes, the Nittany Lions need Clifford to be able to run the ball some, and he had a beautiful 58-yard scamper Saturday against Buffalo. So this is no ...

Pitt-PSU game can go away now

It’s Penn State-Pitt week once again. The last one we will see for some time. And truth be told, I’m perfectly fine with that. At the risk of sounding blasphemous around these here parts, it’s OK with me that the Nittany Lions and Panthers are wrapping up their ...

Early schedule gives PSU chance to grow

UNIVERSITY PARK — The Penn State faithful surpassed the 104,000 mark at Beaver Stadium for the second consecutive week so imagine if the opposition was a team that people actually wanted to see play. Instead, we’ve witnessed Idaho and Buffalo as season-opening appetizers. And you know ...

Giger: Night games are a blast! Let’s have lots of them

I think Neil’s bedtime is 10:30. He starts to get a little cranky after that. So it’s understandable he doesn’t like a bunch of night games. Penn State’s just poking the bear scheduling these things. I love night games. I stay up late anyway, so it’s no bother to me. I’m ...

Rudel: Buffalo, some others not built for prime time

I understand the genie has been out of the bottle in college football for many years, and it won’t be put back in. TV is driving the bus, picking the matchups and the kickoff times, and too many games are at night. The television revenue has helped football staffs and athletic departments ...

Giger: Firing of Ryan simply makes no sense at all

This makes no sense whatsoever and is a totally disgraceful move by the Pirates organization, which has so many people who are bad at their jobs, yet they decided to scapegoat the wrong guy. Curve manager Michael Ryan got fired Tuesday, and he was told the news by Bucs farm director Larry ...

Cross country teaches self-discipline, improves health

The fall semester is underway in earnest, along with the new sports seasons. Evening lights turn on over football and soccer fields, with the sounds of crowds, bands and cheerleaders emanating from the busy athletic facilities. In contrast to these high-profile, high-decibel athletic events ...

The cupcake business: Scheduling FCS foes all about the Benjamins

Penn State embarrassed a really, really bad Idaho team Saturday, 79-7, and by this point, we all know why these kinds of games are played. Big teams eat up the cupcake opponents, who in turn get tons of money to take back to their campus and use it to fund the rest of their athletic ...

Clifford meets first-game challenge

UNIVERSITY PARK — OK, let’s not get too carried away with anything that happened Saturday at Beaver Stadium. Idaho just didn’t provide the kind of barometer for the Nittany Lions to gauge themselves. The final score was 79-7, and it wasn’t that close. But, when you’re breaking ...

Keeping the faith in week 2

It’s often said that positivity is at its highest in the preseason when every team is 0-0. But, after reviewing each team’s Week 1 results from the Mirror’s coverage area, there’s certainly a reason for every team, even the ones that experienced lopsided losses, to feel good about ...

Lions’ RB competition should be fun to watch

The answer to today’s question is obviously the new starting quarterback, but I’ve written like 27 stories about Sean Clifford leading up to the season, so let’s go in a different direction here. My original pick was the wide receivers, in large part because I think Justin Shorter is ...

Receivers must show big jump from 2018

Cory deferred the first choice this week so I picked the receiving corps. I think it’s the most intriguing spot after the position collectively failed last year, resulting in the dismissal of receivers coach David Corley. The Nittany Lions led the nation with 36 dropped passes in 2018 — ...

Giger: Year two big for Rahne, who needs to show more this season

Now that Penn State finally has named Sean Clifford the starting quarterback — a no-brainer for months, really, since Tommy Stevens transferred — the big question entering the season is if coordinator Ricky Rahne can get the most out of the new QB and overall offense. Make no mistake, ...

Back to school: Activities help celebrate our communities

The yellow buses that have been slumbering all summer will roar back to life this week, and quiet classrooms will echo with voices once again as students go back to school. And as the school bells ring, entire towns will come together as well. Schools provide the populations they serve with ...

NASCAR needs some excitement at Bristol

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — It was 20 years ago when Dale Earnhardt Sr. spun Terry Labonte to win a Saturday night race at Bristol Motor Speedway. Earnhardt was chasing the trophy — the playoffs didn’t exist, no stages, no bonus points — and The Intimidator simply wanted the victory. Labonte ...

Parking alert: PSU getting word out

We’re 20 days away from the first Penn State football game of the season, and the athletic department has created a couple of media-related challenges for itself. Specifically, the challenges relate to parking and ticketing — and Penn State needs the media to help deliver the messages ...

National Wild Turkey Federation banquet on tap

This Saturday night is the exciting fund-raising banquet of the Allegheny Mountain Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation. This chapter has won many awards for its habitat improvement, planting activities that benefit the wild turkey and many other wild creatures. Doors open at ...