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Penn State Football: ’Twas The Week of Idaho

by on August 25, 2019 6:00 PM

'Twas the week of Idaho, when all through Happy Valley,

Every student was stirring, Sylly Week another reason to dally.

The RV passes were hung from Shamokin to Mill Hall with care,

In hopes that the 2019 season soon would be there.


James Franklin’s young team — #bedcheck — was nestled all snug in their beds,

While visions of 50-point blowouts danced in their heads.

And Cliff in his #QB1 hat, and KJ in his over-sized helmet cap,

Had just balled out in summer camp’s biggest snap.


When out on the Lasch practice field there arose such a clatter,

Sandy sprang from the BJC to see what was the matter.

Away to the window she flew like a flash,

Tore open the shutters and prayed CJF didn’t want more cash.


The sun on the new turf of the practice fields all green,

Gave a luster to a murky offseason of naughty Journey and Yetur, plus a never-ending portal scene.

When what to Sandy’s wondering eyes did view,

But a Big Blue bus and eight captains (seven new).


With a driver with a camp beard and a QB decision not-so-quick,

I knew in a moment he must be James Geoffrey – not St. Nick.

More rapid than Buckeyes his coursers they came,

And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name:


"Now, Michal (no E) Menet! now, JJ! now Garrett and Patrick!

On, Cliff! on, Cam! on, Blake and Sutherland!

No more hanging out at the Den or downtown Champs…at all!

Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!"


With a Pry defense that will like a Spence chaotic hurricane fly,

When they finally meet with an obstacle, it’ll be under an October sky.

So up to The Beav the coursers they flew,

With the sleigh full of RBs and WRs, and Micah (3 carries, 2 catches, 1 KR per game) too.


And then, in a twinkling, I saw on E. Barron’s presidential suite roof,

The prancing and pawing of Pinegar and Stout’s big hoof.

As Saturday followed the team bus to the Beav, and was turning around,

Through the south end zone tunnel — holding back players in that Lion tamer stunt — he came with a bound.


He was dressed in all blue and that silly Penn State grey, from his head to his foot,

And attached to his clothes were all kinds of charts, and scribbled on wrist when to boot.

A bundle of Rahne trick plays he had flung on his back,

And he prayed that there were some JoeMo leftovers in his pack.


His eyes — how they twinkled! his goatee, how merry!

His cheeks were like roses, his nose like Ju’Juan sniffing Florida quarry!

Joe Lorig’s stat guy Aman was doodling up kick blocks for which he'd never get a bow,

And Kevin Threlkel – James Geoffrey’s new chief elf — made sure everything was just so.


The stump of a grin James Geoffrey held tight in his teeth,

Held back the smoke when not replying to a Rudel or Audrey or Josh Moyer Tweet.

He had a broad face and was on a Parker roll at receiver, a large handful of glee 

That was Hipp and Shorter and Dotson, all complements to Kahlee Jacoby.


He was jumping and fist-bumping, a right jolly middle-aged elf,

And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself.

A wink of his eye and a twist of his neatly-shaved head,

Soon let Nittany Nation know it had nothing to dread.


James Geoffrey spoke not a word, knowing that the Vandals were anything but,

Having lost seven times in 2018 by an average 51-to-19 nut.

The game over after mashing Idaho 63 to 3, he exited, laying his finger aside of his nose,

And giving a nod, back into the tunnel he shot a No. 1 pose.


He sprang to his black SUV with Fumi at the wheel, to his team he gave a whistle,

And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.

But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight to his home and his girls go...

“We’re 1-0, now it’s Buffalo, Buffalo, Buffalo!”

Mike Poorman has covered Penn State football since 1979, and for since the 2009 season. His column appears on Mondays and Fridays. Follow him on Twitter at His views and opinions do not necessarily reflect those of Penn State University.
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