As frequent visitors to the site may have realized, posting has been a tad sporadic the last couple of days. I have been in the process of moving, and as anyone who has gone through that process can attest, nothing ever goes exactly to plan. In my case, that is a connection to the internet. But, as I have been largely unplugged from the world for the last 48+ hours, I have been able to spend time getting settled into my new home.
What does this have to do with Penn State, you ask? It’s really quite simple. In my nearly 12 years as an “official” Penn Stater, I’ve accumulated some pretty interesting, at least to me, items. As we slowly work our way towards fall camp and the start of the season, and as I continue to unpack, I thought it may be fun to share a few.
- As many of you probably know, I played trumpet in the Blue Band for my 4 years as a student. I have several photographs taken by Tom Mairs, who has taken some fantastic shots of Penn State football, and other aspects of PSU over the years. These photos have great sentimental value, of course, but also remind me of some pretty unique PSU memories. The first is from my first game, PSU vs. Miami in 2001. Sure, the game didn’t go exactly to plan for the Lions, but being greeted by 110,000+ as the band did pregame was not a bad way to be indoctrinated into Penn State football. My other favorite comes from that same year, when at halftime of the homecoming game vs. Southern Miss, the Blue Band, and Alumni Blue Band formed a “324” to commeorate JoePa’s 324’th win, which came the prior week against Ohio State.
- Much smaller, both literally, and in the scope of Penn State athletics, is a souveneir Geary Claxton mini bobblehead. Claxton still may be the best all around athlete I saw play for Penn State on the hardwood, and seemed primed to lead PSU to a big year his senior season, prior to an ACL injury. I cannot recall how this little trinket came into my posession, but I definitely was relieved to see it survive the short move across town in one piece.
- We are all quite familiar with the Penn State gameday buttons. As a member of the Blue Band, we would get these buttons passed out to us on the Friday before every home game, and they would also find their way to us before or right after a road contest. Like any good Penn Stater, I saved each and every one, and always make sure they make the move with me. My all time favorite is still “I-O-Won’t” (they did) and “Penn State dots the “i” in Win” (they didn’t), but the good, bad, or terrible puns are a great part of Penn State football.
We would love to hear some of your great PSU collectibles. Please share yours in the comments!
Follow VBR Lead Editor Matt de Bear on Twitter @PSUMatt2005