Beaver Stadium 2

Well. That went about as poorly as possible. It’s miserable damp raining as I type this, as it should be, because losing to Michigan is miserable.

You know what’s never fun? Watching our team losing to Michigan while they show highlight photos of other losses to Michigan, including several from that awful last second 2005 loss I’ve never quite gotten over.

Also the antithesis of fun? Hearing Michigan complain loudly about Michigan State antics and then watching Michigan players mock our players’ signature celebrations. Saquon Barkley and Trace McSorley are two of the classiest, talented players we’ve ever had so I guess I’ll take a deep breath and feel flattered? Nope. Still annoyed.

I hate losing to Michigan, the team that has dubbed their season “the revenge tour.” I honestly don’t know who I’d like to see lose more in their upcoming duel: Michigan or Ohio State… is there any possible way they can both lose? I’m so over both of you and your questionable sportsmanship.

Ah, here’s where I start to get on my own nerves. This season has been an opportunity to assess my own personality. I’ve been asking so many questions. You know that quote, “I’ve learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage and tangled Christmas tree lights”? When things don’t go my way, how do I handle it? That includes how I handle my team routed by a conference rival.

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Look, I’m as cranky as the next guy. I hate that we lost to Michigan of all teams. But, you know what? You can’t win ‘em all. We were outmatched. We made mistakes. Their team was better. That’s it. Next Saturday is another day.

Sure there are lots of areas we can point to that need improvement but why do we have to find someone or something to blame all the time? Why can’t we just sit with the sting of losing? Why do we sit on our couches complaining about coaches, players, referees, everything? Why can’t we just say “ah good game we’ll get you next time”? Why are we so angry?

I feel like I keep harping on this. I can’t let it go. This is the culture of sports I can’t abide. The rage and the lashing out. The anger and the blame.

There is no one to blame. We are having some growing pains here. The only thing to do is to wake up tomorrow being thankful that we are more than wins and losses. We are better than couchside complaining. We are Penn State, and that stands for something more than record, rankings, or revenge. It’s the reason we don’t have to get so angry about losing on the football field—in academics, integrity, and sportsmanship, we’re never outmatched.

Keep your heads up, Lions. Another chance is just a few days away.

Dawn graduated from Penn State in 2002. As a student, she never missed a football game. She camped out for front row seats before it was cool and danced in Thon. She currently lives outside of Philadelphia. She enjoys teaching, yoga, and being a new mom.

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