Road Trip Diary: Day One

Okay, so it isn't much of a road trip. We're not doing all that much driving. The bulk of ground covered will be at approximately 30,000 feet above the earth. Dan Norz and I are taking the advantage of Oregon State's game at Temple next Thursday. We've transformed a quick two-day weekend trip to Temple into a week-long extravaganza romping around the east coast.

With all due respect to Big Daddy Orange and respective trips to the Fiesta Bowl and to Minor League Baseball games all across the west coast, this will be the most intense and exciting sports trip of my life. Before we're done, we'll see three college football games, three major league baseball games, and a minor league baseball game. This includes a trip to a stadium that seats over 100,000 people and the most storied, lopsided, and best rivalry in baseball three straight days.

Yesterday was our big travel day. Flying east bound across the country takes up an entire day. With the exception of Dan being stopped at every possible point for further inspection, everything went smoothly. No delays or missed flights, which is always a positive.

The Temple-OSU game was originally scheduled for Saturday the 7th. We planned to swing by for a weekend trip. But after the Temple athletic department moved the game to Thursday night, the wheels in our heads began to turn. Things came together better than we could have imagined.

The beginning of our trip would officially be yesterday, as we left our homes and flew across the country. But the trip really began in spirit, Thursday in Corvallis, against Eastern Kentucky. The second significant outing of the trip was a journey into Happy Valley, the home of the Penn State Nittany Lions, who narrowly defeated the Golden Knights of Central Florida, 27-24. It wasn't the most anticipated game of the year for PSU, but it was a chance to see Beaver Stadium (named for former Pennsylvania Governor and PSU President, James A. Beaver), a college football landmark that seats three times the capacity of Reser Stadium.

 


A view from Beaver Stadium.
Our seats were pretty high up (we're talking 200 feet above the highest point in Reser Stadium). But despite being so high and in the endzone, they were actually great seats. It makes it easy to watch plays develop, and it truly gives a feel as to the enormity of the stadium. Three times the amount of people as Reser means three times as many cars. The stadium has plenty of parking in all directions around. We had some terrific hoagie sandwiches and America's Oldest Beer (it's brewed in Pennsylvania) before the game.

Penn State built up a 27-9 lead, but UCF came storming back to come within an onside kick recovery of a full-fledged comeback. The Knights brought a large crowd with them from Orlando and made their presence known. One would think that with the success Joe Paterno has had, the Lions fans would go easy on him, but the second guessing is as prevalent here as anywhere else. But what's important is that Penn State escaped with the victory.
After a day of rest and relaxation Sunday and a trip to see the Harrisburg Senators, we'll head to New York for a three game series between the Yankees and Red Sox at Yankee Stadium. Unfortunately for us, most likely it will be three games of humiliation, heartbreak, and pinstripe domination (we're Red Sox fans). I was fortunate enough to see the Yankees and Red Sox clash last summer around this same time of year at Fenway. Pedro pitched a gem, but the offense was non-existent and the bullpen blew it. New York swept Boston and went on to coast to another division title, while the Red Sox went on to implode. These two teams met last week for two games in which the Red Sox offense and bullpen pulled a disappearing act again. The attitude in the Boston clubhouse seems to be better, but something tells me the result will be strikingly similar. Well, regardless of the result, we have the chance to see it first hand in the first time either of us has been to the Bronx.

We'll see our fair share of tourist spots in the Big Apple before we leave, although we might try to avoid the Times Square Billboard of Keenan Howry, unless Dan brought some orange paint balls. Check back for updates if you'd like to live vicariously through our experiences. We will have enough fun for all of you, too.

Our trip culminates with the game Thursday at Franklin Field. It will be exciting to see how Derek Anderson and the Beavers match up against a D-1 opponent. The Owls shouldn't be taken too lightly either with 19 returning starters (that's including the kicker and punter). It will be a wonderful week filled with lots of sports. What more could we ask for? We'll keep you updated

es all across the west coast, this will be the most intense and exciting sports trip of my life. Before we're done, we'll see three college football games, three major league baseball games, and a minor league baseball game. This includes a trip to a stadium that seats over 100,000 people and the most storied, lopsided, and best rivalry in baseball three straight days.

Yesterday was our big travel day. Flying east bound across the country takes up an entire day. With the exception of Dan being stopped at every possible point for further inspection, everything went smoothly. No delays or missed flights, which is always a positive.

The Temple-OSU game was originally scheduled for Saturday the 7th. We planned to swing by for a weekend trip. But after the Temple athletic department moved the game to Thursday night, the wheels in our heads began to turn. Things came together better than we could have imagined.

The beginning of our trip would officially be yesterday, as we left our homes and flew across the country. But the trip really began in spirit, Thursday in Corvallis, against Eastern Kentucky. The second significant outing of the trip was a journey into Happy Valley, the home of the Penn State Nittany Lions, who narrowly defeated the Golden Knights of Central Florida, 27-24. It wasn't the most anticipated game of the year for PSU, but it was a chance to see Beaver Stadium (named for former Pennsylvania Governor and PSU President, James A. Beaver), a college football landmark that seats three times the capacity of Reser Stadium.

Our seats were pretty high up (we're talking 200 feet above the highest point in Reser Stadium). But despite being so high and in the endzone, they were actually great seats. It makes it easy to watch plays develop, and it truly gives a feel as to the enormity of the stadium. Three times the amount of people as Reser means three times as many cars. The stadium has plenty of parking in all directions around. We had some terrific hoagie sandwiches and America's Oldest Beer (it's brewed in Pennsylvania) before the game. Penn State built up a 27-9 lead, but UCF came storming back to come within an onside kick recovery of a full-fledged comeback. The Knights brought a large crowd with them from Orlando and made their presence known. One would think that with the success Joe Paterno has had, the Lions fans would go easy on him, but the second guessing is as prevalent here as anywhere else. But what's important is that Penn State escaped with the victory.

After a day of rest and relaxation Sunday and a trip to see the Harrisburg Senators, we'll head to New York for a three game series between the Yankees and Red Sox at Yankee Stadium. Unfortunately for us, most likely it will be three games of humiliation, heartbreak, and pinstripe domination (we're Red Sox fans). I was fortunate enough to see the Yankees and Red Sox clash last summer around this same time of year at Fenway. Pedro pitched a gem, but the offense was non-existent and the bullpen blew it. New York swept Boston and went on to coast to another division title, while the Red Sox went on to implode. These two teams met last week for two games in which the Red Sox offense and bullpen pulled a disappearing act again. The attitude in the Boston clubhouse seems to be better, but something tells me the result will be strikingly similar. Well, regardless of the result, we have the chance to see it first hand in the first time either of us has been to the Bronx.

We'll see our fair share of tourist spots in the Big Apple before we leave, although we might try to avoid the Times Square Billboard of Keenan Howry, unless Dan brought some orange paint balls. Check back for updates if you'd like to live vicariously through our experiences. We will have enough fun for all of you, too.

Our trip culminates with the game Thursday at Franklin Field. It will be exciting to see how Derek Anderson and the Beavers match up against a D-1 opponent. The Owls shouldn't be taken too lightly either with 19 returning starters (that's including the kicker and punter). It will be a wonderful week filled with lots of sports. What more could we ask for? We'll keep you updated.

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