In this special Corn Belt Omnibus edition of Obligatory, the guys look back on another frustrating Saturday, as the Penn State’s trip to Lincoln brought a few signs of life, but ultimately ended up like every contest thus far in 2020, dropping the Nittany Lions to 0-4 for only the second time in program history. The only other time PSU dug itself a four-loss hole to start the season (2001), the Lions won their 5th game and managed to string together some wins to remember. Will history repeat as an improving Iowa Hawkeyes team comes to Happy Valley, with Penn State desperate to stave off its first-ever 0-5 start? Brandon, Chris, Kevin, and Mailman wrap up Nebraska, look ahead to Iowa, and try their best to solve the puzzle box of the 2020 Nittany Lions.
The Nittany Lions may be reeling at 0-3, but there’s always a lot to celebrate here in Happy Valley. The guys take a break from the doom and gloom of football talk to welcome in Pearl Gluck and Curt Chandler, faculty in Penn State’s Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications, to learn about the Centre Film Festival, happening this weekend (Nov. 13-15), and the fun and challenge around adapting it into a virtual event for 2020. Tickets are available to stream over 50 films of all genres on-demand all weekend with live Q&As and other events throughout. Afterward, there’s some discussion and predictions for Penn State’s trip to Nebraska, and everything kicks off with Mike the Mailman’s gambling picks for this weekend.
GUESTS: Pearl Gluck, Curt Chandler (Centre Film Festival)
Already teetering on the brink of collapse at 0-2, the Penn State Nittany Lions are now fully circling the drain after a tragic 35-19 home loss to the Maryland Terrapins, a raging dumpster fire for the ages that offered absolutely zero redeeming takeaways and indicted the entire football program from top to bottom. Brandon, Kevin, Chris, and Mailman assemble immediately following the merciful end of State’s miserable, exhausting four-quarter disintegration for a raw and unfiltered reaction to this astounding disaster of epic scope. Embarrassing. Unacceptable. Stunning. Enjoy!
Ben Jones, Penn State beat reporter for StateCollege.com, joins the guys to talk about the experience of covering Nittany Lions football in a global pandemic, the state of the Penn State program in its pursuit of Ohio State, and various other Nittany news from the “resignation” of Pat Chambers to the Maryland game that will make or break the Lions’ fake 2020 season.
Read Ben Jones’ Penn State football coverage at StateCollege.com: http://www.statecollege.com/news/authors/ben-jones,191/
GUEST: Ben Jones
Like everything else on the carnival ride from Hell called 2020, what should be one of the biggest holidays on the annual Penn State calendar – a White Out weekend with College GameDay and Ohio State in town (and on Halloween no less!) – arrives with an unfamiliar emptiness (right down to the stadium). After sharing some final Indiana thoughts, bemoaning the lack of hardball questions on the Penn State beat, and musing on the experience of an empty Beaver Stadium under the lights, the guys delve into the Nittany Lions’ chances of bouncing back from last week against one of the very best programs in the nation. Are biggest obstacles on the field, the sidelines, the recruiting trail, or all three?
It’s about as classic an “Obligatory” take on this wildly unconventional weekend as you could wish for: Different thoughts and perspectives from each of the hosts, plenty of digressions, a bit of Happy Valley flavor with some football mixed in. It’s all we can do to offer a few moments of escape from the barrage of daily insanity, and we hope it helps! WE ARE
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Mark Wogenrich on Replicating the White Out: https://www.si.com/college/pennstate/football/penn-state-football-ohio-state-whiteout
HOSTED BY: Brandon Noble, Mike Herr, Kevin Horne, Chris Buchignani
Well, we asked for Big Ten football in 2020, and we got it. A classic case of “Be careful what you wish for.” What can you say about a program with playoff aspirations in self-styled pursuit of “elite” status that goes on the road and loses to Indiana… in football? Kevin leads the way; Chris and Mailman follow, and they try to figure it out. Commentary on the game’s many, many frustrating mistakes including Devyn Ford’s baffling decision to score, the controversial final play that never should have been necessary, and the overall state of the Penn State football program. Who knew a fake season would create so much real angst?
Pat Chambers tosses the Penn State news cycle into appropriate-for-2020 chaos by resigning only days before the long-delayed start of the football season. Undaunted, the guys touch on the breaking news before moving on to Nittany Lions football. Mike, Brandon, Chris, and Kevin give their thoughts on the loss of Journey Brown, notes from the season’s first depth chart, and what to expect from a deceptively dangerous Indiana Hoosiers team + Kev waxes poetic about his favorite Bloomington haunt Nick’s English Hut. Mailman gives his trends and picks for the weekend, while upset-minded upstart Grilled Stickie takes on traditional power WPSU(X) Coffee Break in the Week 4 Breakfast Bowl of the Penn State Berkey Creamery’s Fantasy Flavor League. Get your votes in now.
“Dad’s Bucket,” Kevin’s recommended piece on Nick’s English Hut in Bloomginton: https://idsnews.indiana.edu/news/dads-bucket/index.html
Friend of the show Mike Levine returns, joining Chris to break down the Penn State Nittany Lions defense by position (reuniting the LION 90.7fm‘s 2000-01 football broadcast team). Despite the departure of Micah Parsons, who was set to be one of the top players in college football, the cupboard is hardly bare for defensive coordinator Brent Pry. Mike and Chris take a closer look at a solid and steady defensive line, promising young secondary, and a linebacking corps that, even without Micah, looks primed to continue the tradition of Linebacker U. Plus, head into the weekend with Mike the Mailman’s Trends to Treasure.
Chris enlists the assistance of friend and fellow LION 90.7fm alum Mike Levine to analyze the 2020 Penn State roster in two installments, beginning with the offense. New coordinator Kirk Ciarrocca brings a track record of success to an offense stacked with veteran talent at nearly every position (with the notable exception of wide receiver). Chris and Mike break down each position group, talk about areas of promise and room for improvement, and speculate on how Ciarrocca’s influence might impact a unit expected to be the strength of this year’s Nittany Lions. Plus a little non-football analysis as upstart Monkey Business takes on tried and true Peanut Butter Swirl in the Penn State Berkey Creamery’s Fantasy Flavor League. Defense and special teams next episode.
Penn State Athletics has put out the call for fan-generated videos to use inside Beaver Stadium and on social media. Chris is ready to start filming; Mike the Mailman is skeptical, and Kevin is (unsurprisingly) ambivalent, but all three get a laugh out of one forbidden transgression. With John Dunmore departing the team, the guys review the Nittany Lions unsettled wide receiver group, and then turn to scrutinizing how playoff selection might play out amid the ongoing train wreck of 2020. We’ve also got Mailman’s Trends to Treasure for the weekend. Remember to log on and vote in the Penn State Berkey Creamery’s Fantasy Flavor League.