In my view it was important to preserve Ohio State as an annual border rivalry and the closest B10 rival geographically. Wisconsin is also a good opponent and always a fun atmosphere to visit - my favorite Big Ten away game venue - but Thanksgiving weekend every other year in Madison? Sounds cold.
We will need to get used to not playing Michigan as often. But when we do it will be a big game.
The rest of our regular opponents - Illinois, Indiana and Purdue - provide competitive balance and preserve some other rivalries. I would prefer one less team from Indiana but it's okay.
I love the idea of a Penn State-Nebraska annual rivalry game and we got that as a permanent "crossover" game!
2011/2012 schedules now look like this:
Schedule PSU 2011:
9/3 Indiana State
9/17 at Temple
9/24 Eastern Michigan
10/1 at Indiana
10/22 at Northwestern
11/5 Open date
11/19 at Ohio State
11/26 at Wisconsin
November schedule looks like a tough one!!! Last two games away then possibly a championship game in Indianapolis?
A lot of Nittany Lion fans will be disappointed that we're not playing Ohio State at home next year. But overall that's a one year problem and it's a decent home schedule. Alabama, Iowa, and Nebraska will come calling, and it will be fun to welcome both Alabama and Nebraska back to Beaver Stadium!
Schedule PSU 2012:
9/8 at Virginia
9/29 at Illinois
10/13 Open date
10/20 at Iowa
10/27 Ohio State
11/3 at Purdue
11/10 at Nebraska
Home game schedule includes Navy, Ohio State, Wisconsin. Away game schedule - Virginia, Illinois, Iowa, Purdue and Nebraska - looks like fun. A bit more of an even schedule, with not all big games back to back in November.
In meantime, Robert Bolden starts on Saturday. A true freshman.
Coach Joe Paterno at his ripe old age continues to surprise!