At the beginning of the 2012 college football season I had the opportunity to travel with a small contingent of Ohio University fans to State College. Before ever departing from Middleport, Ohio, our group had some serious reservations about what we were to experience.
Horror stories had been whispered to us regarding the fanaticism of the Penn State faithful and the recent tragic events that had been shadowing the college only further clouded our expectations. But, all of our fears were quashed. Instead of being greeted by legions of rabid fans, foaming at the mouth, we encountered endless gratitude and hospitality.
We were welcomed to countless tailgates by dozens of those who sported royal blue and white.
One man even asked to have himself photographed with us, the opposition.
This, he said, was a personal tradition and a tribute to opposing fans that traveled so far to see his Nittany Lions take the field. It is refreshing to see that the real spirit of sportsmanship and integrity still resides in at least one Happy Valley.
On behalf of at least seven strangers, and certainly with regards to many more, thank you.