Silver Bullet Points Looks For Heroes

Written January 25th, 2012 by MaliBuckeye

Weekly updates and miscellany from around the world of college sports…

Urban Meyer's Secret Identity?

Buckeye 411

  • Hoops, There It Is- #Hop2theRafters
  • We’re Stars- With the Senior Bowl nigh upon us, we’ve been hearing good things about the former Buckeyes in attendance. Mike Adams, in particular, is getting rave reviews; his form and size have many projecting him into the first round. Mike Brewster has been, according to report, owning Michigan’s Mike Martin (what else is new?), and things are getting a bit chippy between the two. DeVier has been rumored to have a case of the dropsies, and we haven’t heard much from Boom as of yet.
  • Don’t Just Take Our Word For It- From an article on the Cleveland Browns website about DeVier, it sounds a bit like he picked up with Tressel was laying down,

“To be able to lead, you have to serve first,” Posey said. “I feel like being on scout team, helping the younger guys and being in the meeting room and telling them the little tips that I have allowed me to understand the game more and it humbled me as well. That’s what I needed going into this process and going to the next level. Through this process, everything you hear is what you can’t do and everyone’s tearing you down. Going through the draft, you’re going to hear a lot of negative things and then, when you get into camp as well, you have to be humble as well. You have to serve the team and show them you can play. I felt like I learned all those lessons this past year.”

  • Don’t Just Take Our Word For It, Part Two-  Again, from the Browns’ website, Mike Brewster said that his work at OSU prepared him well,

“Every day at practice was a challenge, so I definitely think that will pay dividends,” Brewster said of Ohio State. “It really comes in the preparation the last couple weeks and really, four years of college. Now, it’s just show time and it’s time to go out there and do it. Anytime you get a chance to go against the best, you want to measure yourself.”

  • Crunching Numbers At Crunch Time- Even though we’ve hit a lull in the Urban Meyer Recruiting Cavalcade, there are still worries that Ohio State might have some issues when it comes to making the 2012 class fit under the 82 scholarship limit imposed by the NCAA.  The Dispatch takes a close look at the numbers, while the OZone’s Brandon Castel has some insider information on some of the attrition that usually happens when there’s a change in coaching. While we (and our friends at Oversigning.com) will be watching the numbers closely to see if there are any SEC shenanigans, it should be remembered that this is not something Urban’s been wont to do. Oh, and Cincinnati has over thirty current verbals. I guess Ohio’s BCS team is trying to become Ohio’s SEC team.
  • You Will Comply- The Lantern has an update on the move to make athletic compliance a part of the larger University oversight.
  • Urban Sez- Bonus material from the interview with the BTN-

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Joe Paterno Passes Away: College Football Loses a Lion

Written January 22nd, 2012 by MaliBuckeye

Paterno

Note- This was initially published on Saturday the 21st, based on the Associated Press report. We deeply regret the error.

Earlier today, former Penn State coach Joseph Vincent Paterno passed away after complications from a battle with cancer. He was 85 years old.

Paterno, who had been a part of the Penn State Football program since 1950, served as its head coach for 62 seasons beginning in 1966. During that time, the Nittany Lions amassed 38 winning seasons and an overall record of 409-136-3. His teams were awarded two national titles and finished their season undefeated on four occasions. He has the most wins of any coach in NCAA Division 1 history.

After joining the Big Ten conference in 1993, the Paterno led Lions won or shared three conference titles and had a 95-54 record under Paterno. He was awarded numerous National “Coach of the Year” or “Sportsman of the Year” accolades during his career.

While PSU Alumni and fans pride themselves in being able to say “We Are- Penn State”, this was never more true than for Joe Pa. Paterno was the face of the University and the program; from his signature tie and dark framed glasses to the team’s “no frills” workmanlike uniforms, his legacy lives on well beyond Xs and Os. His fundraising and philanthropic work have created a lasting foundation for many in Happy Valley and throughout Pennsylvania.

While the revelations of the past several months will certainly mar some memories of Coach Paterno’s legacy, it cannot go without acknowledgement the impact that his leadership has had on college football and college athletics

Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and those close to him at PSU and across the B1G and college football. Godspeed.

Update: Coach Meyer has released the following statement-

“I am deeply saddened to learn about the passing of Coach Joe Paterno. He was a man who I have deep respect for as a human being, as a husband and father, as a leader and as a football coach. I was very fortunate to have been able to develop a personal relationship with him, especially over the course of the last several years, and it is something that I will always cherish.

“My prayers and thoughts go out to his wife, Sue, and to their family, and also to the family he had at Penn State University. We have lost a remarkable person and someone who affected the lives of so many people in so many positive ways. His presence will be dearly missed. His legacy as a coach, as a winner and as a champion will carry on forever.”

Across The Web: Penn State

Written November 17th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

Today, our long time friend Mike Pettigano from Black Shoe Diaries swings by the clubhouse to give us insight on the Penn State season as well as some of his thoughts about what might be next for the Nittany Lions. We also talk about fair media coverage… and agree that it’s not happening. Mike was the one that brought PSU’s efforts with RAINN to our attention… worth your time to get involved.

Penn State spent a good portion of the early part of the season struggling to find an offensive identity.  Has the coaching staff worked out some of the kinks, or is the PSU offense still a work in progress?

MMMMMMMoxieeeee!!!

The offense suffered a pretty big hit this past week losing Mike McQueary’s services on the sideline. He was the guy running the show, calling in the plays, substitutions, personnel packages. Granted, the reasons for his absence dwarf the problems on the field last week. But it’s the football-related answer to your question. Silas Redd has become the offense since late September, but he suffered a minor shoulder injury this week that kept him out of practice so far. He should be ready to go for the game this weekend, as he’s the most physically well-conditioned player I’ve seen in a long time. The guy was averaging 28 carries over three weeks in October, yet still churned out 100-yard games like it was nothing. However, Redd hasn’t been able to win games on his own. The quarterbacks have to be at least functional. And whatever the view on Matt McGloin may be, he’s the starting quarterback now. As long as McGloin avoids stupid mistakes, he can be a decent game-manager. That’s all Penn State needs in a quarterback, but hasn’t gotten much of it against decent opponents this season.

 

Whispers are that Silas Redd may not be healthy enough to play on Saturday, and it was announced that McGloin will be the starter (rather than sharing time with Bolden) – How does that impact the Lion Offense against Ohio State? Read More

Silver Bullet Points Thinks Pink

Written November 16th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

Initially, this week was supposed to be “POPS”- Pink Out Penn State for Breast Cancer Awareness.  While we’ve not heard anything more about that since things changed in Happy Valley, we’re more than glad to give our support. You know… given the circumstances.

This Week's Wallpaper from Kevin Dearth

Buckeye 411

  • Walking Wounded- It seems as if the injuries are piling up for the Buckeyes. Andrew Sweat will miss Senior Day (will dress, but not participate) with the aftereffects of a concussion, meaning Ryan Shazier will get his first start.  Although he’s listed as the starter on the depth chart, Big Hank will more than likely not play this Saturday- although the injury is not deemed season ending.  JB Shugarts might play, as he recovers from a knee issue; he practiced on Tuesday, but is trying to take it easy. Don’t be surprised if Ohio State looks to get someone else to false start against PSU. Philly Brown is also dinged up from last week’s prep, and Boom mentioned that he re-tweaked his ankle, but is doing fine and plans to play.
  • Fickell Speaks- As always, the message is “We control what we can control, and learn from what happens”.  In reflecting on some of the struggles that the team has had recently, Fickell commented that you have to play the hand that you’re dealt, and that life isn’t always fair.
  • We Can Has WR? This week should mark the beginning of DeVier Posey’s two/three game season, barring some arbitrary shenanigans from Indianapolis. When asked about his presence on Gameday, Coach Fickell responded that much of it would depend on how Posey progressed at practice and if Philly was healthy.  He did say, though, that he hopes DeVier gives the offense a spark similar to the one Boom provided against Illinois. So, yeah- he’s playing. Read More

End Of An Era: Joe Paterno Fired

Written November 9th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

End Of The Road

WEDNESDAY EVENING UPDATE: At approximately 10:00 PM EST, the Board of Trustees at Penn State University announced that head football coach Joe Paterno had been terminated from that position, effective immediately.

Paterno had announced his resignation at the end of the season earlier on Wednesday (see below), but the Board decided unanimously that Paterno’s tenure needed to end as soon as possible. In addition, University president Graham Spanier was also removed from his post.

Defensive coordinator Tom Bradley has been named interim head coach; current Provost Rodney A. Erickson has been promoted to interim University president.

Following the announcement, students and others took to the streets in response; at least one vehicle was overturned in the process.

Penn State faces Nebraska on Saturday in their last home game of the season.

—–

Wednesday morning- After 46 years as the head coach at Penn State University, Joe Paterno has announced that this season will be his last.

While there was speculation all season that Paterno would step down following the 2011 campaign, particularly after surpassing Eddie Robinson for the most win in Division One football against Illinois. However, the events of the past few days, including the ongoing scandal and investigation of former assistant Jerry Sandusky, have solidified that this will be his last year as the face of the Nittany Lion program.

His statement-

“I am absolutely devastated by the developments in this case. I grieve for the children and their families, and I pray for their comfort and relief.

I have come to work every day for the last 61 years with one clear goal in mind: To serve the best interests of this university and the young men who have been entrusted to my care. I have the same goal today.

That’s why I have decided to announce my retirement effective at the end of this season. At this moment the Board of Trustees should not spend a single minute discussing my status. They have far more important matters to address. I want to make this as easy for them as I possibly can.

This is a tragedy. It is one of the great sorrows of my life. With the benefit of hindsight, I wish I had done more.

My goals now are to keep my commitments to my players and staff and finish the season with dignity and determination. And then I will spend the rest of my life doing everything I can to help this University.”

Paterno retires from a career that saw him on the PSU coaching staff since 1950. He led Penn State to five undefeated seasons, two national championships, and numerous bowl wins. His teams have achieved three Big Ten titles, the latter two shared with Ohio State.

Silver Bullet Points Prepares To Boil Over

Written November 9th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

Step One- Get Hot At The Right Time

Buckeye 411

  • Injury Update: Lots of things to report today- Jordan Hall is recovering nicely from the sprained ankle he suffered against Wisconsin, and practiced with the team today. Boom Herron also has an ankle related injury from the Badger game, but has been playing through it and healing as well. At tackle, there was no word on JB Shugarts’ situation; he’s “unlikely” for Saturday, and today’s practice saw with Antonio Underwood at right tackle most of the time, with Mewhort and Marcus Hall filling in as well.
  • Fickell Speaks: Actually, he doesn’t speak- specifically about the Penn State situation, he said that he hadn’t been following the specifics and had no comment.
  • Boiler Up- Coach Fickell spoke about how Purdue has always been a tough matchup, and that this year should be no different. While they’ve dropped their last two, they’re also 4-1 at home. He talked about how he can name every single issue from the 2009 game, and how he hopes that the focus they’ve gotten recently carries over.
  • Passing? Fancy. According to today’s press conference, the passing expectations that receivers are expected to learn at Ohio State is pretty complex, which might explain some of the challenges that this young group has had thus far. Interesting that they don’t simplify the system, it seems… although I’m sure they didn’t expect to have so many veterans on the sidelines either.
  • Getting Defensive- Coach had several things to say about the defensive efforts of his team thus far, including the need for more turnovers if they are going to be successful. In regards to the concerns about some lack of focus late in recent games, Coach Fickell said,

We got to finish. We know defensively we talk about it. It’s not about how you start, it’s about how you finish. It’s about us first playing four quarters. I don’t know that you can pinpoint any one specific thing that we could say is anything different. To me it really comes down the thing against Wisconsin is being able to overcome giving up one of those things, giving up one of those big plays that you can just go to the next play and not still dwell upon those things of the past and move forward. I think that’s probably, from the start of the season to right now, where we’ve got to get a lot better defensively.

We’ve had those expectations. We don’t want anybody to ever score. All of a sudden something happens. It’s like there’s a letdown. We want to keep those same expectations, but we have to know the most important play is the next play, move on, correct those things within a game. Read More

The Week That Were: 11.05.11

Written November 7th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

The Week That Were looks at the hyperbolic and the unexpected. Once again, I was wandering around the wilderness on gameday, which explains why Stevie makes a repeat appearance as our soundtrack for “The Review Of The Century”:

NOTE- Scroll down for our comments regarding Penn State coverage.

Knowing Your Target Demographic

Well, let’s get right to it… the game that many saw as a pick-em at kickoff, between the top two teams in the country, was the “highlight” of an interesting week.  Sorry for those of you playing the “oversigning” drinking game- in the hours and hours of lead up and coverage, not a single mention of the biggest issue behind the scenes for this matchup. At least you could be the Designated Driver, right?

As for the game itself- it was a classic matchup of two solid defenses. Or, it was a clash between two teams that could not offensively amount to much of anything. It all depends on your perspective, I reckon.

That’s not to say that there weren’t moments to enjoy, though. I’m someone who normally appreciates defensive struggles but also hates soccer,  and I can admit the players that Alabama and LSU didn’t run off during the offseason put on the field showed the “SEC Speed” that we continue to hear so much about during home game bowl season. To keep Trent Richardson in check when he’d been running through offenses like he was a fancy car or something… that’s significant. These teams both were firing on all cylinders on the defensive side of the ball, even if they couldn’t outscore a baseball game.

Only one thing frustrated me, to be honest- Les Miles absolutely should have faked the third down field goal and gone for the touchdown.  Lester… man, you’re getting soft. Saban, on the other hand, was in championship form- I can see why people want to play for him… he’s so cuddly! Read More

The Week That Were: 10.29.11

Written October 31st, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

I’ll be honest… it’s been so great to relive the huge Buckeye win over Wisconsin, I’ve had to dig a bit to find motivation to even think about the other games from this week. However, my search for a soundtrack that would be appropriate for Halloween Weekend, I found this gem that helped me keep my focus…

Digging The Soundtrack

The story this week was big upsets, both with teams falling from the ranks of the undefeated and teams rising to the occasion against expectations.  So let’s start in that vein, and with a little “howdy do” to our newest BFFs from the Iowa State contingency, who turned the tables on a Texas Tech team coming off a huge upset on their own. And it wasn’t just a “win” against the #20 Red Raiders, but a 41-7 demolition of Tommy Tuberville’s squadron… must have been a bit presumptuous to start the “Mike Leach Who?” talk, huh? No wonder the folks in Lubbock were chippy.

But the Cyclone satisfaction didn’t stop there, as cross state rivals Iowa also fell in a surprising factor, to a Minnesota team that’s been disappointing both for their coach and for their conference. But, in a week where the new guy got a huge “Vote Of Confidence“, his Gophers responded with a one point victory in Iowa City to the perennial B1G Coach Of The Year. They get Floyd back in Minneapolis, which is always a good thing.  Yup, just another week of pride for the folks at ISU… enjoy your moment. Read More