Thanksgiving Break is great because I get to take a break from school, see my family and just bum around the house for a week. However, Thanksgiving Break also means that a lot students go home and don’t go to the game (especially if Indiana is the opponent). It’s frustrating for my friends and I who are so passionate about Penn State football to see the atmosphere pretty dull compared to what it usually is. Despite the lack of a true game day feeling in Happy Valley, the Nittany Lions took care of business in their second to last game of the year:
-Unfortunately, for those of us who call Nittanyville home during home game weeks, the cold weather prevented us from doing the usual campout routine. If the temperature gets below freezing, we’re not allowed to sleep out during the night. So on Thursday and Friday, we were only allowed to occupy Gate A from 8 a.m.- 8 p.m. Don’t worry, we still got a bunch of free pizzas and of course, the best seats in the house.
-During the pregame show, I was appalled at how empty the student section was. I knew a lot of students weren’t going to be there, but what I saw right before kickoff was embarrassing. Students who went home early just because they could and missed the game have to realize how much this team means to Penn State and how special these young men are. But people did start showing up throughout the first quarter and the student section eventually looked respectable.
-Allen Robinson is just an absolute beast (and he’s just a sophomore). He’s a playmaker with killer instincts that recent Penn State offenses have lacked. Two of his three touchdowns occurred right in front of where I was standing: 1) the screen where he broke a bunch of tackles and ran, and 2) the crazy one-handed catch that he was interfered on. My friends and I just stood there in awe when that second one happened. It was absolutely phenomenal.
-Some random older Penn State fan stood next to me for a little during the second half. I don’t know if he was an alumni or just a fan, but he was yelling and was into the game a lot. I love seeing non-students get fired up during games, so I enjoyed his company.
-After Indiana scored that long touchdown and recovered the onside kick, all Penn State fans probably thought the same thing: another third quarter collapse is on the way. Thankfully, Penn State regained their poise, scored a couple touchdowns and eventually put the game away.
-The last thing I want to talk about is unfortunately a very unhappy thing. That would be Michael Mauti’s injury. Words can’t describe what this man has meant to this team, this program, this university and to Penn Staters around the world. His leadership on and off the field has been beyond incredible and he embodies what Penn State is all about. I’m not going to lie, when Michael Zordich went over to check on Mauti when he was getting carted away, it made me tear up a bit. Those two played a huge role in keeping this team together through everything. Let’s all hope Mauti recovers and can play football again because he, more than anyone else, deserves to.
I can’t believe there’s only one more game left. It seems like Ohio was just a couple weeks ago. Anyway, Senior Day should be a very special one because it’s for a very special senior class. I don’t need to explain what this senior class has meant to Penn State. I just really, really hope a lot of people attend because that’s the least they deserve. Hopefully the Nittany Lions can end the season on a high note by beating Wisconsin and send these seniors out the right way.
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