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Penn State Fanhood: An Investigation

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Those who don’t learn from their mistakes are doomed to repeat them.

Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic - Memphis v Penn State

Obligatory Premise:

Before we get started, allow me to establish that I am not here to try and reinforce whether or not certain allegations recently brought against Penn State University and their football program are true or false. I am certainly not here to try and add to the culture of “guilty until proven innocent”. Okay, perhaps that second statement won’t exactly hold up throughout this, but that’s just modern “journalism” baby.

Obligatory Re-Hashing:

We all know the circumstances, so I will keep this brief. Earlier this week, former Penn State football player Isaiah Humphries filed a lawsuit against head coach James Franklin and several Penn State football players. The suit alleges that Humphries was the victim of several acts of hazing while at Penn State. The details of the suit become pretty gruesome, so I will spare everyone.

Details, if you must have them: https://tribwpmt.files.wordpress.com/2020/01/coach-james-franklin-several-penn-state-players-accused-of-hazing-in-fed-lawsuit.pdf?fbclid=IwAR1YWavd6rP1qIQE4RyX_qzF5Fo6SxMK0nQIvDhagDiSL_uXT0EQ0i-P6xE

See, brief AF.

What the Hell are we Doing Here:

Right, we have an agenda here, more specifically, I have an agenda. What is that agenda? To drag Penn State and everything associated with Penn State through the mud to further tarnish their image, whether it be justified or not, naturally! But again, I am not here to slam down the hammer of judgement on those involved with the suit before facts allow me to do so in a warranted fashion. That would be irresponsible!

I could use my words to explain why I dislike Penn State all day, I could yell at my computer until I was red in the face, but no one would listen, because I am just one biased Maryland fan idiot. Instead, I would like to employ the words coming from the Lions Den itself in order for you all to better formulate an opinion on why you, too, should dislike Penn State. (Okay, okay, I know, you all already hate Penn State, this was all just for my own amusement)

Below are comments from the Nittany Lion faithful that pertain to the issue at hand. Do the following comments accurately represent the sentiments of the Penn State fan base as a whole? Probably, absolutely not. Have I cherry-picked said comments in an effort to fit the needs of my pre-established agenda? You bet your god damn ass I did.

The Evidence:

The following reactions from PSU peeps range from “Oh my God you’re a terrible human being” to “Okay, I guess”. At any rate, I plead with some of you more rational PSU folk to go yell at some of your Nittany brethren, because they are ass holes, and need a good yelling at.

Many of these were pulled from a fan post, from a prominent SB Nation blog, because said blog has neglected to even do their own write-up about all of this yet, as well as some other threads around the web. (i.e. 247 and reddit, although I was late to the reddit party, so I fear the best comments had already been removed)

Obviously the internet is the last place someone should traverse when trying to gauge the overall state of humanity, and many of the comments below probably don’t even reflect the overall character of the people making them. But, this is sports in 2020 baby, so it’s all we got.

Are y’all ready, fasten your seat-belts, it’s going to be a bumpy night. Some comments have been edited mildly, for contextual and grammatical purposes.

  • “Perhaps a bit too bad. Something just doesn’t seem right about this. I just find it very hard to believe the coaches would let that kind of stuff happen, especially in light of IT.”
  • ”Some pretty awful stuff there to be just made up out of spite/bitterness.”

(On second though, I may have misinterpreted this one, I’ll let you decide)

  • ”This happens in every football locker room from the Pros to Jr High. Nobody should kid themselves.”

(This is a favorite of mine, because anyone, anywhere that has ever played youth sports, knows this is not true)

  • ”I believe it was already proven untrue. NCAA did not allow him a waiver last year because it was not credible. But, If I’m Parsons, Gross-Matos I counter sue this kid and his father for defamation.”
  • ” What’s next? Tackling too hard in practice = creating a culture of violence.”

(Ah yes! The old snowball argument. If we stop letting boys put their wieners in strange places, WHATS NEXT? The fall of Christianity!!??!)

  • ” Come on, hazing is bullshit.”

(Oh boy, that is bound to trigger the shit out of someone)

  • ” College was fun when I was there. Now its seems like a clowder of uptight, on edge, small cats waiting for their victim-hood.”

(For those curious, a ‘clowder’ is a group of cats, apparently)

  • “Just because a prominent father says his son is telling the truth doesn’t mean he is. Mike Leach got canned at Texas Tech because Craig James took a break from killing five hookers to slander him.”
  • “We can never have nice things”

(Yes, yes you had to endure some seven win seasons after committing the worst atrocity to ever occur in the world of collegiate sports, we all feel terribly bad for you)

  • “I played HS football in Texas... Hazing was literally a part of life as an underclassman... wtf is Humphries carrying on about ? How would he handle tO$U or scUM players calling him Sandusky’s bitc* during a game...Come on now...”
  • “Penn State is an over the top liberal school hyper-sensitive to anything hazing “

(Hell, that might trigger some PSU people)

  • “How much you guys wanna bet that the “anonymous tip” was from Humphries?”

(I would be wary throwing around terms like “anonymous tip” at PSU these days. POW, penis jokes are the only kind of jokes.)

  • “So either nothing comes from this or we settle. Ok, so can stop worrying about this now.”
  • “People have been freaking out about this stuff for a few years now. this will barely be a blip on the radar.”
  • “If you’re filing a frivolous abuse-related lawsuit against PSU, and you want some attention, you’re 100% tossing in some Sandusky-related accusations.”
  • “It’s not going to happen, but it would be good if the university would punch back for once.”

(All of these comments that 100% jump to the conclusion that all of this is 100% false are just top notch and wayyyyy more justified than jumping to the conclusion that all of this is 100% true)

  • “This is likely nothing more than a kid with a weaker personality struggling to find footing in the locker room.”

(F’kin Millennials)

  • “This is exactly the behavior that leads to more of these lawsuits! You ******** punch back and punch hard. Tire of PSU being everyone’s program to ***** on.”
Green Week 2020
Pictured: Eric J Barron with the “Tire of PSU”

The tire is red, because Penn State yearns to be red, like all other teams in the Big Ten.

  • “I could be wrong here, but I feel like some of us are concerned about the media catching on like leaches with ridiculous headlines and such. Or how it could impact the program. Then again, you could argue, who really cares about the media?”

(I cannot imagine a Big Ten football program, or their head coach falling victim to some sort of media circus)

  • “People are soft as butter these days. Grow a set. I have yet to hear “damages”........specific damages???”

(Maybe he couldn’t grow a set, thus others were offering to put “their sets” on him...pretty classy if you ask me)

  • “Just a guy who’s upset he didn’t see the field so he’s gonna try and take it out on the university.”
  • “Even more exposure of what a POS [Humphries] is... Give me $$$. His social media posts alone have already sabotaged his case!”

(I think this, is what the kids are calling, ‘victim shaming’)

  • “I think [Humphries] is nothing but a POS.”
  • “Just want to bring up one point which may or may not have any relevance. As someone who experienced a bit of hazing in my fraternity 25+ years ago, the hazing actually is typically performed by older members of the group to initiate younger members into the experience of the group.Why would guys from the same class haze one another. Micah and Jesse and Damion were in the same class, wouldn’t this be something where the upperclassman would initiate? The whole thing just makes absolutely zero sense if you think about it and start to dissect the logic here.”
  • “ This kid sounds like a spoiled brat who came in expecting A and got B...got pissed and ran crying.”
  • “This story is already old news . Money grab . I hope PSU dosent give the kid a damn dime and the few players Humphries mentioned I hope all sue the hell out of the Humphries family”

I think I have to stop, I could keep doing this forever, I cannot even bring myself to make ‘humorous’ quips about each ignorant comment anymore. I expected twenty percent of the comments I investigated to be of such a nature, but it was closer to eighty. When I started putting this ‘article’ together, I made the assumption that it would be kind of difficult to ‘cherry-pick’ the kind of comments I was looking for, but my god, y’all made it super-easy. Congratulations.

There are about a million others that pretty much all say, “We already did an internal investigation and no charges were pressed so definitely nothing happened.” This may be true, but the continued side-stepping from camp PSU is infuriating.

Obviously all fan bases contain their fair share of terrible people, and all fan bases have people that would comment on certain things in a less than tactful fashion, but I just don’t get how, seemingly a majority, of a fan base, particularly this fan base can be so dismissive, so contrary. The lack of contriteness is worrisome. This is all just my opinion, nothing more, I am not the authority on how people should react to things, but my god, thank all of you for re-affirming my hatred for your football program.

Now, all of you lambaste me about Jordan McNair.

This is me, right now, in my mother’s basement

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