Baltimore Sun

College football open thread; or, Paterno goes down to Tuscaloosa

Joe Paterno's shoes, and a whistle.

Hey, it's a college football day.

Fanhouse's Brett C. McMurphy has a handy primer.


McMurphy builds his story around the fact that today would have been Bear Bryant's 97th birthday. Which is a cute way to approach it. Unless you're a Penn State fan. Because then all you can think is, "What offense will Paterno be running when he's 97?"

Spencer Hall over at Everyday Should Be Saturday offers his preview in Twitter-length bits. 


Your prime-time game tonight is No. 18 Penn State at No. 1 Alabama.

The game has given many people a chance to report and write introspective pieces on the man they call JoePa,

As mentioned here before, I went to Penn State and covered Joe Paterno. Six years ago I thought he was finished. I was wrong.

I doubt I'm wrong in thinking that the ole Nits have hardly a chance today. Here are some predictions from the most respected guys on the Penn State beat, the gentlemen at The Patriot-News. None predict an upset. Last I heard, the spread was somewhere around 12 points, and that sounds about right.

(My brother, who is moving from San Diego to Baltimore, has begun his journey eastward with a stop in Vegas. I'd call him to get the most updated line, but then I might interrupt.)

You've also got a couple of other Big Ten teams playing in doozies today, with Ohio State hosting Miami and Michigan heading to South Bend to face the Fighting Irish. There's Florida State at Oklahoma, too, as well as Oregon-Tennessee and Georgia-South Carolina.

Locally, Maryland hosts Morgan State for the first time ever, and expects its defense to continue maturing under junior safety Kenny Tate, the Sun's own Jeff Barker writes.

So, plenty to talk about. And you should feel free to do so here, in the comments section. I'll return with thoughts throughout the day.


I've got to run out for a bit and look at apartments. Home hunting is another topic up for discussion should you feel like it.

Finally, if you haven't

, you should. It's popular to say never forget on this day. And we must not. But,  nine years later this story maybe can help us do something that's never been easy to do: understand.