Here are answers to questions being asked of the Nittany Lion squad:
What was the reaction of the players to the bowl selection news?
Some players were "pretty upset" with the pick and some opted to tweet their disappointment. This reaction angered some on the staff along with a group of the veteran players.
The squad had a players meeting Sunday where they discussed the bowl and the opportunity it presented. Some were vocal with their feelings that "it was unfair that the players were snubbed," according to one program observer.
Players like Devon Still, Silas Redd and Derek Moye, among others have have stressed the opportunity and challenge Houston poses, pointing to what "Joe [Paterno] has taught them - humility, graciousness and appreciation."
Some observers feel that the reaction is understandable, "given what they have been through." However, as one put it, "Some of these guys have to be smarter. They forget their able to broadcast out to the nation and it's not just their roommates and friends on Twitter."
Since then the players have muffled their feelings, while some have Tweeted positive message and even thank you notes to the bowl for selecting PSU.
One reason for the initial negative reaction could well have been the way they players have been treated as an afterthought through the crazy last month. They had to hear much of the breaking news — on the Sandusky scandal, Joe Paterno's retirement and firing, and Paterno's cancer diagnosis — through the media or social networks. The bowl announcement was just the latest example of that.
What is the mood of the team?
"There is certainly some lingering initial disappointment, but there growing talk about Houston being a big test and facing the number one offense in the nation," an observer explained.
Added another observer, "some guys are really excited to go someplace new and play again on New Year's. This could be one of the more exciting [bowl] matchups."
What was Tom Bradley's reaction?
Bradley was on the road recruiting when the announcement came on Sunday. Bradley spent last week meeting with many Class of 2012 prospects and pledges.
According on one observer, "Tom takes what's given to him. He's a positive, upbeat guy and quickly moved to tone down the negative talk. He's excited to see what this team can do."
Was there ever discussion of Penn State turning down the bowl bid?
"None [from the university administration] that made it down to Lasch offices," one observer shared. "And that's not how Tom thinks. He knows [the players] have been pulled into this fiasco and taking a bowl away would be more punishment. Not everyone agrees with that, but being with teammates and playing this game is therapeutic to a lot of [the players]."
What is the latest with Bradley and the coaching search?
As mentioned previously, Bradley has been "putting in overtime to keep this [recruiting] class together]." As another observer said, "He's trying to do what it right for the program and show that he's the right guy - that he'll do whatever it takes and also always have the good of the program and university front and center."
As a further show of support, several former football lettermen are petitioning to keep Bradley as the program's head coach. Among the former player involved are LaVar Arrington, Brett Conway, Brandon Short, James Boyd, Brandon Noble, Josh Gaines and Freddie Scott.
Many observers still feel Bradley is unlikely land the head coaching job, but "the vocal support certainly doesn't hurt."