College Football: 4 Quarters
College football is much more than what takes place between the hash marks on Saturday afternoons.
From the coaches office, to the campus quad, to the stadium, there is no end to the number of compelling stories.
No other competitive endeavor evokes such fierce loyalty, such passionate support.
Each Monday I will look at some of the stories that take place away from the scoreboard.
I hope you enjoy.
First Quarter: the Penn State Scandal
The Penn State Nittany Lions hosted their first football game since the news of the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse scandal broke.
Many have insinuated that the healing process has now begun.
If only it were that easy.
As painful as it may be for fans, alumni, students and players, this issue must be allowed to run its course.
Has the healing begun for the young men whose childhoods were taken from them in the shadow of Beaver Stadium?
I don't think so.
Not when they are subjected to daily updates on the news regarding the case, and not when they are confronted by rallies denigrating those who removed Joe Paterno from his coaching position.
When those who were abused are ready to move forward, then Penn State football can do the same.
Second Quarter: Big East Logjam
With only a scant few weeks left in the season, the Big East has six of its eight teams still vying for the championship, and a spot in a coveted BCS game.
As mentioned in an earlier article, parity is not going to earn the conference any points in the respect category.
With the distinct possibility that a Big East team may follow Connecticut's lead from last season and earn the crown with multiple league losses and a very pedestrian overall record, the rest of the college football world keeps pointing and laughing.
At some point, in some season, a team has got to wrest control of the conference and show it belongs on the big stage.
Until then, the ACC will continue to offer the Big East a hardy, "thank you."
Third Quarter: Penn State Scandal Part Deux
The judge who allowed bail for Jerry Sandusky has done charity work for the Second Mile organization.
I'm not suggesting that there was any impropriety in her decision, but it seems that this is a pretty obvious situation in which the judge should have recused herself.
Fourth Quarter: There Are Still Games to Be Played
Even with the turmoil of the past week, college football is still the greatest sport around.
From the day Rutgers bested Princeton on a field outside of New Brunswick, New Jersey some 140 years ago, a love affair has raged between the game and its fans.
There truly is no sport quite like it.
From the Yale Bowl in New Haven, to Spartan Stadium in San Jose, college football is king.
Enjoy every down of it.