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2012 College Football Week 9 Review, Analysis: Penn State vs. Ohio State


For anyone that knows me this will sound hypocritical, but I think it needs to be asked for after Saturday’s Penn State loss to Ohio State.

I know, I know. You probably don’t want hear it.

I’m not normally big on perspective either. I didn’t even think about making one preparation for this little rain event until after Saturday’s game as that was where my focus was much of the week.

Stories of how hard I have taken losses are legendary amongst family and friends.

And, yes, I could talk for days about the unfathomable defensive holding call on the punt and blown opportunities in the game’s opening minutes.

So for all of you that don’t like to be lectured and want to throw up at the very words, “it’s only a game,” I feel your pain.

I will only ask this.

How much fun did you have this past week?

Since 24-0 at halftime of the Iowa game, people were pumped for Ohio State.

A record number of students – over 1,200 – camped out for five nights to get into the game early.

Tell me you didn’t have an extra spring in your step on each succeeding day from the Iowa game until Saturday.

Could you feel the increased pulse on campus?

Could you feel the extra energy downtown?

Did you see the overflow amount of RVs in the overnight parking?

Were you at the buses when the team arrived at the stadium?

There were nearly 108,000 in the stadium again and it was loud. That first half was as loud as the stadium has been in a long time.

The blocked punt for the touchdown was right up there with the loudest moments ever in Beaver Stadium.

These are the things that Mark Emmert tried to take away. These are the things that national blowhards tried to make us feel like criminals for enjoying.

Since the sanctions were announced in July, we all wondered if we would ever see one of these again. And how long it would it take – four years, five years?

Nope. It took eight weeks of playing football with an incredibly high character group of players and an amazing coach in Bill O’Brien – but it happened. It also gives us great confidence that it will continue to happen.

There were dozens of recruits on the sidelines Saturday night. Even though Penn State loss, they couldn’t have walked away with any doubts that this team will be successful and this program will be supported.

Yes, the game on the field went downhill after that defensive holding call – a call that is rarely ever called in that way (have you seen the replay of it?).

But I’ll treasure all the things that happened all week. Think about that. For months, we couldn’t wait for the season to start so we could talk about on the field stuff instead of all the crap off the field.

This week, all the off the field stuff was awesome. The atmosphere. The environment. It was everything that you hope to see. It was one of those games that only come around once every few years. And it somehow – in the face of everything that seemed to doom the program – happened this year.

It might have been a loss on the field – but, given everything that’s happened over the last year, it was a win in every other respect.

It’s just a matter of perspective.

Marty Valania covers football for Follow @EastRecruiting on Twitter.

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