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IOWA @ PENN STATE _ my prediction

September 24, 2009

I know I’m going to get a lot of heat for this one but I have to get it out there. For a while I was telling myself to not post this until Friday afternoon thus sparing me the wrath of my Penn State friends and colleagues. But where’s the fun in that?

This weekend the (unranked) Iowa hawkeyes come to happy valley to challenge the fourth ranked Penn State Nittany Lions (my beloved alma mata.)  Going by the rankings, this game shouldn’t be a big deal, not at all. Penn state, being the fourth best team in the country, should steam roll Kirk Ferentz and the black and gold (note: Steelers colors.)

Penn States Daryll Clark

Penn State's Daryll Clark

So why the heck is ESPN College Gameday in town? Why does this game deserve the coveted 8PM primetime time slot on ABC?

Sure there’s the white out (google best student section in the country.) Sure there’s the revenge factor (google Penn state at Iowa 2008.) Sure there’s Joe paterno (google college coaching legends.) There’s a million reasons this game is so hyped, I just wasted my time listing some of them.  The real reason though? The number one reason: they want us to lose.

Penn State's White-Out. An impressive sight.

So what’s my prediction? It hurts to say this but, and any objective college football fan will tell you this, Penn state is overrated. Sure, I love the blue and white. Sure, I’ll get all tingly when the team runs out of the tunnel, but anybody who watched the games Penn State has played this season, actually watched the games and not just looked at the score and wrote it off as a blow out, know Penn state just isn’t clicking. Not like a true national champion contender should be (see Florida, see Alabama.)

In my opinion, neither the offense nor the defense is as solid as it was this time last year. To put it more bluntly: we are not as good as we were last year. Our ranking is a Coaches and AP Poll anomaly… one the voters probably figure will work itself out (i.e. we lose.)

Now, let me assure you (again) I’m still a Penn stater through and through. I want/hope/pray that the Nittany Lions come out firing on all cylinders. I want Daryl Clark to come out Heisman-caliber. I want the defense to give Kirk Ferentz nightmares for years to come. I want us, in front of a national audience, to make a statement that every fan, every sports writer, will remember (for the rest of the season.).

But, in all likelihood, that won’t be the case. I’m just being realistic here people. An upset is much more likely.  Our team has problems.  I won’t get into them but they do.  Picture Iowa storming the field as the last seconds click off the clock. Picture a Gatorade bath for Ferentz. Picture a handful of Penn State players on their knees, their heads in the grass, their dream season crushed.

More heartbreak in store for the Nittany Lions?

More heartbreak in store for the Nittany Lions?

Sigh. Maybe I’m wrong. I want to be wrong.  I hope I’m wrong.  Maybe I’m too pessimistic for my own good.  I guess we find out in a few days.  My prediction:

IOWA 17

PENN STATE 10

Let’s hear what you think…

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. dik nup permalink
    September 24, 2009 4:11 pm

    Like you, though I bleed blue & white, I believe we are ranked higher than the level of our play has indicated so far. I hope we are just playing to the level of our competition, but that’s never been how our better teams in the past have rolled. That said, I’m not sure Iowa is the team to humble us first, but there is a significant chance that they will. It’ll be close, regardless.

    • cklockwork permalink*
      September 24, 2009 6:44 pm

      That’s one argument I’ve heard a few times this week: that we’re just playing to the level of our competition. But that seems rather naive of fans to assume and an entirely too risky strategy of play. You run the risk of, well, unintentionally losing every game you play.

      This season, thus far, does not have the ‘feel’ of a championship season (Big Ten or otherwise.) By this time last year, or in ’05, the fans knew they had something special. I don’t think there are many Penn Staters willing to step up and make a similar declaration at this point in the year.

      I’m coming to the conclusion that this is a ‘rebuilding’ year as opposed to the ‘reloading’ year we all hoped it would be.

  2. Jeremy Smith permalink
    September 24, 2009 5:21 pm

    Get of my internet you communist!

  3. Jeremy Smith permalink
    September 24, 2009 5:21 pm

    That’s o-f-f.

  4. jerry permalink
    September 25, 2009 2:56 pm

    Hey Koogs — Thanks! You just clinched it for us.
    Lion mascot guy

    • cklockwork permalink*
      September 25, 2009 11:54 pm

      Jerry — you’re welcome. thanks for posting!

  5. September 26, 2009 5:21 am

    You are actually admitting to bleeding blue and white? Really? Christopher ‘I always pick against Penn State’ Kugler? Oh, I forgot this is a posting for your fiction writing. This might be the best piece you’ve written in a long time.
    I guess this is a coming out party in a sense. I decided to make my wordpress page and kill my old blogspot page, so I figured there was no better way than calling out your oddly out of place homerism that hasn’t existed for… come to think of it I can’t think of the last time I really believed you were really pulling for Penn State. I guess you’ve finally been away from it long enough.
    So, there was once this guy I knew. He knew everything about Penn State football, but fuck if he wasn’t a pessimist, His name was The Kug. I guess he died a while back. Nobody really paid any attention. No obituary ran in the Times, Centre style. That might be because nobody really cared that he was finally gone. Everyone was kind of hoping that one day he would pass, and out of his ashes would come the man who was once a big homer.
    Maybe that day is nearing. Maybe that day will never come. I think November 8th we’ll no for sure, but until then we’ll just kneel bedside every night hoping, wishing, praying…

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  1. THE KILLER INSTINCT_something to do with Penn State Football « Klockwork Kugler: This is my blog. This is what I do.

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