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Mailbag: How long until Penn State wins the Big Ten, who is to blame in Atlanta, and a Super Bowl pick

It is time to get back to the college football mailbag, because what you need is one more Friday mailbag post to read. Any good college football writer has a mailbag feature, and I do not want to be left out of the mix. But I want to try something a little different and answer some of your questions in video form in addition to written. Therefore, every mailbag post I put together moving forward will take some of the best questions received and put them in a video response. Keep sending in your questions any way you choose and I may throw them in to the video mailbag if I like it enough.

Submit your questions for a future mailbag via email, Ask.FM, Twitter or Facebook.

How long until Penn State wins a Big Ten championship? – Jeremiah H. in Philadelphia

To assess where Penn State stands in the new look Big Ten we need to take a few things in to consideration. First, Penn State has two years remaining on a postseason ban issued by the NCAA following the release of the Freeh Report. I have a feeling that will be reduced by one year at some point, but for now we have to assume Penn State will be ineligible for a Big Ten championship for two years.

That gives new head coach James Franklin a couple of years to really build his program to his liking, and I have a strong feeling his recruiting efforts are going to put together a tough competitor in the Big Ten. I expect him to continue to develop young players he’ll inherit such as Christian Hackenberg, Adam Breneman and Nyeem Wartman. Bill O’Brien did what he could with recruiting in his short time with the program, and I have expectations Franklin will be able to build on that as the program has scholarships reinstated ahead of schedule. Franklin has yet to coach a single game at Penn State, so in fairness he does have something to prove. He has talked the talk since being introduced as the new Penn State head coach. Now let’s see if he can walk the walk. I think he can and will.

Penn State will play for a Big Ten championship within two years of being eligible for postseason play, and with the Nittany Lions likely to be coming out of the tougher of the two divisions it is certainly a realistic expectation they will be a favorite to win a Big Ten Championship game. I think in the next four or five years, Penn State will be a Big Ten champion, which could very well place them in the College Football Playoff.

Coke or Pepsi? – Anonymous via Ask.FM

Naturally I liked this one, and I even used it for a Crystal Ball Run Facebook question of the day. The choice is simple here, and I honestly do not know why there would be such a debate. Coke is the answer every day of the week (although I do not recommend drinking either every day of the week.

Is it OK to tweet at recruits? – Robert Shaw in Montgomery, Alabama


Simply put, any fan who tweets at a high school recruit is committing an NCAA violation for your school of choice. Sure, your school may never actually be slammed with hefty NCAA sanctions as a result of your tweet but take a moment to think about what you are doing. You are sending tweets to high school kids begging or encouraging them to go to your school of choice. Honestly, how creepy is that? I have mentioned players in my tweets before, I’ll be honest, but fortunately I never tweeted at a recruit begging them to go to a specific school.

Just let the schools handle the recruiting, OK?

Who is to blame for the winter weather trouble in Atlanta? – Joel G in Atlanta

It sure sounds as though Atlanta’s political leaders came up short this week with their lack of preparation for the winter weather conditions. Atlanta simply is not used to the sort of conditions they saw this week. Blame must first be placed on the mayor but when I asked former Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron who he thought should take the blame he suggested years of success ultimately was to blame.

Who do you have in the Super Bowl? – Dave Heller, Baltimore

My initial reaction was to pick the Denver Broncos, but as I sit here today I am going with the Seattle Seahawks. When push comes to shove, I’ll roll with the team with the better defense. After all, defense wins championships, right?

I think the bigger question is what would a Super Bowl loss mean for Peyton Manning’s legacy? Without a doubt a second Super Bowl victory, with a second team, would cement Manning’s place among the all-time greats, but I tend to believe he is already there even if he comes up on the wrong end of the scoreboard Sunday in New Jersey. If we are to believe Dan Marino, with zero Super Bowl rings, is one of the all-time greats, then why would we dismiss Manning’s career with a second Super Bowl loss? I just don’t get it. Manning is one of the all-time greats, win or lose Sunday.

Official Super Bowl prediction: Seahawks 27, Broncos 24.

About the Author

Kevin McGuire
Contributor to College Football Talk on Also a contributor to Athlon Sports and The Comeback. Member of Football Writers Association of America and National Football Foundation. Follow on Twitter @KevinOnCFB.