Monday, November 10, 2008

What a Worthless Weekend

Um. What exactly just happened? Did Penn State really just lose to a 4-loss Iowa team that dropped games to Illinois, Northwestern and Pitt? I mean, that actually happened?

Yeah, it actually happened, and it completely ruined my weekend. Coming off a bye week, the undefeated Nittany Lions had everything in the world to play for. They had just gone into the hostile territory of the Horseshoe the week before the bye and slugged it out with Ohio State, coming away victorious. All that stood in the way of an undefeated regular season now was a trip out to Iowa followed by a home game against Indiana and another home game against Michigan State. Plus, the entire nation seemed convinced that Penn State didn't belong in the national title game, adding some motivation to a team that was leaped during its bye week.

So naturally, I though Penn State would come out fired up. I was dead wrong. In fact, in cold temperatures and a swirling wind, Penn State decided to start the game with three straight passes. Who the fuck was calling these plays, Andy Reid? And the results of those three plays were disastrous. Daryll Clark showed he was primed to have another God-awful game, refusing to move out of the way of a defensive lineman directly in front of him on the first play from scrimmage, resulting in him getting hit as he threw for an incomplete pass.

It is official: I suck when my team needs me.

Clark then managed to miss a wide open Jordan Norwood on the second play and then was sacked for a 19 yard loss, fumbling the football in the process (which should have been ruled a touchdown by Iowa, by the way), after refusing to get rid of the football. It was pathetic.

And while we're on the subject of pathetic, let's pile on Mr. Clark some more. Two weeks ago against Ohio State, Daryll Clark had his worst game of his career. In fact, he did everything in his power to try and have the Lions lose against Ohio State, missing wide open receivers all night. Thankfully, he was knocked out of the game just in time for Penn State to win.

Then this week, Clark somehow managed to be even worse. He completed just 9 of 23 passes in the game, again missing a plethora of wide open receivers. Of course, a few of those incompletions weren't his fault, as Jordan Norwood and Andrew Quarless decided to drop a few passes that a one-armed blind person could have caught. But this does not excuse Clark, who managed to throw for just 86 yards and tossed a crippling interception at the end of the game, which eventually led to Iowa's game-winning drive.

So to sum things up, with Penn State nursing an undefeated record and a chance to play for the national championship, Daryll Clark has completely shit the bed the last two games. I'm actually going to throw out everything he did up until the Ohio State game, because it has been proven that the teams he did manage to beat weren't very good. When Clark had to actually play some good teams with good defenses on the road, he choked. Saturday, he should have been benched at some point during that game, because he simply could not make a throw to save his life. Maybe Pat Devlin deserved another look.

I'd also like to call out Tom Bradley here. I know the man has done a masterful job all year, and hell, the last 5 years, but Saturday was a joke. I just can't figure out why he keeps playing players that simply aren't good at all when he has better players behind them. Like Josh Hull. As I've said before, Josh Hull sucks. He can't cover. He can't tackle. He isn't fast. Basically, he is everything you don't want in a football player. Same thing with Tyrell Sales, who did manage to get an interception by some divine intervention. And Mark Rubin. And you know what, ever since Brandon Minor used Anthony Scirrotto as his personal doormat, Scirrotto has sucked. And he did again on Saturday. Why aren't Mauti and Gbadyu starting at linebacker with Navorro? And why the hell didn't Drew Astorino play safety at all? He's faster, smarter and a better tackler than Rubin and, at this point, Scirrotto too. I'm just dumbfounded by Bradley's insistence that these players who suck can get the job done.

But wait, there's more. Why didn't Penn State blitz the shit out of Ricky Stanzi. All we've heard all season is Shonn Greene is a stud and Stanzi is not very good. So on every play, Penn State should have had 9 guys in the box and blitzed on every passing down. Make Stanzi beat you with pressure in his face. Instead, Bradley routinely rushed only four, and Iowa had no problems blocking an undersized Penn State defensive line. It made no sense, and Stanzi got more and more confidence as the game went on and he had more and more time to sit in the pocket. It was maddening.

Truthfully, Penn State did not deserve to win. They showed they could have won, but with all the mistakes, they didn't deserve to win. When only three players show up to play, it spells trouble. And beside Derrick Williams, who had a huge game, Evan Royster, who was getting 5 yards a pop with ease throughout most of the game, and Jared Odrick, the only defensive player who seemed to give a shit, the rest of the Nittany Lions didn't look all too interested in playing. And that sucked.

But, I still say that was not pass interference on Scirrotto. The ball was essentially a jump ball, and Scirrotto went for it. He touched the ball, and it was about a foot over the receiver's head. Scirrotto has every right to that ball, and he went for it. When he jumped to get it, the receiver ran into him. That was a bad call. Also, it was dumb for Scirrotto to even attempt to pick that, for fear of pass interference, but I really don't think it was interference.

Also, on that final drive for Iowa, I don't understand how that one where Stanzi threw the ball away as he was about to get sacked wasn't intentional grounding. He certainly wasn't outside the tackle box, and I sure as shit didn't see a receiver. Unless he was 5 yards upfield, which could be the case because ABC did a shitty job with the camera work. But it looked like intentional grounding to me, and that would have been huge.

But still, you won't win many games when your worst player is your quarterback. And on Saturday, Daryll Clark was the worst player on the field.

The Flyers also lost, and the Eagles are still the worst clock management team in all of football. Good to see that even after 10 years, Andy Reid and Donovan McNabb can't figure out how to manage the clock.

It was nice to see Asante shadow Plax, who did nothing except that one touchdown (why was Dawkins covering Plax?), but the Eagles could not stop the Giants' running game, and they lost. I just hope Andy Reid leaves my life some time soon.

This weekend sucked.


  1. What an awful sports weekend. I was all primed to come home from vacation and here about penn states big win, but whats the first thing i see after i land, "They Lost" is in my inbox. I nearly broke down on the plane. I knew Iowa would be a tough game, but come on. We had a week to rest and prepare. We have better players and some coaches, what happened. I thought for sure we had it. I ran into some Penn State fans in Iceland and figured that must have been a good sign. This is awful. I have been reading about this game all morning and am close to tears. Should I even mention the eagles? Are they even a team? Im almost positive there is a Pop-Warner league coach that makes better decisions that our lard ass of a coach.I also ran into some Eagles fans in Iceland, another good sign? I guess not.

    Welcome to another 25 years

  2. Just be glad you didn't have to watch this. It was awful. Just awful.

  3. I bet you drank til you puked in iceland though...that must have been pretty cool