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If fans have seen the last of Tom Bradley on a Penn State sideline, he'll be long remembered for loyalty and excellence.
Here are the final stats from Penn State's 30-14 loss on Monday afternoon against Houston in the TicketCity Bowl at Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas.
Case Keenum put up the big air numbers for Houston, throwing for 532 yards and three touchdowns on 45-69 passing. Rob Bolden led the Nittany Lions with 137 yards, a touchdown and three interceptions on 7-26 passing.
On the ground, Charles Sims was the leading rusher for the Cougars, racking up 39 yards on six carries. Michael Hayes had 20 yards on two carries as well. For Penn State, Stephfon Green led the way in his final game in Blue and White, putting up 63 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries. Silas Redd had 53 yards on 14 carries and wildcat quarterback Bill Belton picked up 38 yards on six carries.
Houston's Patrick Edwards far and away led everyone in receiving yards, racking up 228 with two touchdowns on nine receptions. Justin Johnson had a game-high 12 catches for 148 yards and a touchdown while Tyron Carrier had 58 yards on nine receptions.
For the game, the Cougars outgained the Lions 600-305. Houston had 24 first downs to Penn State's 14 and the Cougars forced three turnovers to the Lions' zero.
Penn State interim head coach Tom Bradley talked to ESPNU's Lisa Salters after the Nittany Lions' 30-14 loss against Houston at the TicketCity Bowl in Dallas and lamented the Cougars' long scoring plays.
"We knew one of the problems we were going to have was the big play and that was what got us," Bradley said.
The coach said he thought his players put in a good effort given the difficult circumstances they've endured over the last two months. He also expressed happiness for Houston coach Tony Levine, who picked up his first career win as a head coach in the victory.
Quarterbacks coach and co-offensive coordinator Jay Paterno talked to Salters as well. He echoed Bradley's thoughts on the team's effort, saying "We were just one step off most of the game."
Speaking about his emotions after what could potentially be his final game at Penn State, Paterno said it will likely hit him when he sees his family after the game, and that Penn State will always be home for him.
Lastly, when asked for a comment directed to his father, Joe Paterno, back at home in State College Paterno opened up.
"I love the guy and I'm looking forward to everyone knowing what I know about him and what I know about his character and that that has never wavered, that he has always done what was right."
With time winding down in the TicketCity Bowl at Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas, Houston quarterback Case Keenum has eclipsed Doug Flutie's legendary number of passing yardage against Penn State. Flutie's mark was 520. Keenum is at 531 and counting.
Houston punts to Penn State after its drive stalls. The Nittany Lions are running out of time, but could still make this a one possession game with time to play if they score a touchdown quickly.
Stephfon Green picks up a pair of first downs on the ground, but Bolden throws his third interception of the game to end another Penn State drive. That's pretty much the game, folks. Penn State throws a couple of deep balls at the end zone hoping for a miracle, but the prayers aren't answered.
Penn State finishes its 2011 season with a 30-14 loss against Houston and begins what promises to be the most turbulent offseason in Happy Valley in a long, long time.
Penn State takes over down 30-14 in the TicketCity Bowl at Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas and gets a couple of strong rushes by running back Silas Redd. On the second run of the pair, though, Redd limps off after getting hit in the knees. We'll keep an eye on him.
With Redd off the field, Bolden throws up a lame duck on third down, and it's picked off by Houston. He's now 4-16 passing for 127 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions.
Back in possession, Houston moves up to midfield with a mix of short passes by quarterback Case Keenum and some runs. The Cougars have slowed their pace considerably, likely trying to run the clock down on Penn State. A holding penalty stalls the drive, though, and Penn State will get a chance to pull the game to within one possession.
Wildcat quarterback Bill Belton picks up a first down with a nice run and a facemask penalty tacked on to pull the Nittany Lions up to midfield. Once again, however, the coaches move away from Belton and the wildcat and give the ball back to Bolden. Not surprisingly, the drive sputters out and Penn State punts.
With 7:19 to play in the game, Penn State still trails Houston, 30-14.
Penn State's momentum following its third quarter touchdown in the TicketCity Bowl at Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas to pull within 27-14 of Houston doesn't last long.
The Cougars get the ball back and move down the field in the blink of an eye, driving into the Nittany Lions' redzone with a mix of intermediate passes by quarterback Case Keenum and a big rush by running back Charles Sims. Before the Penn State defense even knows what hit it, the unit faces a crucial 3rd-and-goal at its own 4-yardline.
Fortunately, it keeps the Lions alive by forcing an incompletion. A touchdown there probably would have been the end for Penn State, but the Nittany Lions' defense comes up the with stop when he absolutely needs it.
Matt Hogan comes on and hits a 22-yard field goal, and with14:52 remaining, Penn State trails Houston by a score of 30-14.
Penn State starts its drive down 27-7 against Houston at the TicketCity Bowl in Dallas with a short run by wide receiver and wildcat quarterback Bill Belton. One second down, quarterback Rob Bolden fumbles after taking a pair of shots from Cougars defenders and though Penn State recovers, the result is a loss of 10 yards.
On third down, Bolden comes back strong and throws a 69-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Justin Brown, and just like that, Penn State is still breathing, now trailing 27-14 with 2:38 to play in the third quarter.
Bolden isn't having a good day but any stretch with just three completions on the afternoon. This is still a two possession game, though, and if he can get it together now after that big play, he can still preserve the day for the Nittany Lions. We'll see if he and his offense is equal to the task.
Quick injury note as Penn State and Houston begin the second half of the TicketCity Bowl at Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas; Cougars wide receiver Tyron Carrier will not return after a second quarter injury.
Penn State takes the second half kickoff and deploys wide receiver Bill Belton as a wildcat quarterback, and those sets pick up a few first downs into Houston territory. Quarterback Rob Bolden then fumbles the first snap of the fourth set of downs, then nearly throws a pick on second down. On 3rd-and-11, he's finally picked off at the Houston 4-yard, which might not be a terrible thing, as an incompletion would have forced a punt that may not have given Penn State such a field position advantage. Regardless, the Nittany Lions have their momentum killed once again.
Houston takes over and quarterback Case Keenum casually goes over 400 yards for the day with a couple of passes up to the Penn State 37-yardline. Penn State forces a punt near midfield, though, and lives to fight another offensive drive.
Back in possession, Penn State again uses Belton in the wildcat and that leads to a first down. The coaches go back to a standard set on the next set of downs to predictably lame results. Silas Redd is bottled up for a short gain before Bolden is hit from behind on second down. The Houston defense finishes off the drive by forcing an incompletion to draw a Penn State punt.
Houston gets the ball back and quickly moves past midfield down to the Penn State 28-yardline with a run by Charles Sims. The drive stalls, but the Cougars pick up three points with a 38-yard field goal by Matt Hogan.
With 4:21 to play in the third quarter, Houston leads 27-7.
Here are your halftime stats as Houston leads Penn State by a score of 24-7 in the TicketCity Bowl at Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas.
On the ground, Stephfon Green leads the Nittany Lions with 36 yards and a touchdown on nine attempts. That's a 4.0 yard per carry average. Silas Redd has 23 yards on nine carries and wildcat quarterback Bill Belton got three yards on his only attempts. Charles Sims is the big rusher for the Cougars with 12 yards on two attempts. Houston had just four rushing attempts in the first half.
In the receiving game, Patrick Edwards has seven catches for a game-high 200 yards and two touchdowns, coming of the 40 and 75-yard variety. Tyron Carrier and Justin Johnson have nine and eight catches, respectively, for a combined 141 yards. Five other Houston players have receptions already.
Total, the Cougars outgained the Lions 398-115, including 380 to 55 through the air. Houston is 5-10 on third downs to Penn State's 2-9.
Following Penn State's first touchdown in the TicketCity Bowl, the Cougars return the ball to midfield, leading 17-7. Case Keenum hits a short pass before missing on second down, bringing up and 3rd-and-7, but hits Patrick Edwards down to Penn State's 35 for a first down.
On the next set of downs, Houston faces a 4th-and-1 and Penn State forces an incompletion at its own 25 to get the ball back. A huge play for Penn State. The difference between Houston getting some points to stem the Nittany Lions' momentum and Penn State having a chance to make this a one possession game.
The Lions go 3-and-out offensively on the next drive, but turning the Cougars away without points was a huge momentum boost.
Was a huge momentum boost.
After Houston gets the ball back, Keenum finds Edwards for 75 yards wide open down the middle of the field for a back-breaking touchdown. Drew Astorino slipped and fell, leaving Edwards with plenty of pasture to work with. Totally lets the air out of the balloon for the Lions.
With 1:43 left in the half, Houston takes a 24-7 lead.
Penn State goes 3-and-out on its next drive and Houston misses a field goal as time expires. The teams go to the half with the score still 24-7 Houston.
Case Keenum is putting on a passing clinic at the TicketCity Bowl at Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas. After guiding the Cougars to their third scoring drive of the game, Keenum is 17-23 passing for 201 yards and two touchdowns, a startling stat line for a Penn State defense not used to conceding that kind of yardage in an entire game, let alone one quarter of play.
Meanwhile, Penn State continues to struggle offensively. Quarterback Rob Bolden just led the Nittany Lions to a fourth-straight 3-and-out to start the game. Wide receiver Bill Belton was deployed as a wildcat quarterback for the first time on second down, but went almost no where. A Bolden incompletion on third down led to another Penn State punt.
Keenum takes over at the Houston 37-yardline and drives the Cougars down to the Lions' 28-yardline as the first quarter ends. After a rush for a first down to open the second quarter, Keenum is halted by the Penn State defense, though, and Matt Hogan is forced to come on for a 37-yard field goal, which he misses to keep the score 17-0.
With the ball back in hand, Bolden hits tight end Kevin Haplea for a first down, Penn State's first of the game. Devon Smith is smothered on an end-around on the next set of downs, though, and a deep ball to Derek Moye falls incomplete to force a 3rd-and-13. Bolden misses Moye again, and Penn State punts...again.
The second down pass to Moye was a good one by Bolden. Moye simply dropped it. As a senior playing in his final game and hoping to be selected in the NFL Draft, that's a play Moye needs to make.
Houston gets the ball back near its 30-yardline and Penn State forces a 3-and-out. The Lions' defense looks like its beginning to figure this offense out a little bit. This forces a punt which Justin Brown brings back 93 yards and a touchdown for Penn State. A review rules he stepped out of bounds at the Houston 33-yardline. Regardless, it was electrifying stuff from Brown who appeared trapped inside his own 10 when he caught the ball.
Back on offense, Penn State picks up a first down on a run by Stephfon Green, but Bolden is sacked for a loss of eight yards on the ensuing second down play. Bolden comes right back, though, and hits Smith for 43-yards down the near sideline down to the Houston 20-yardline.
Silas Redd picks up a first down at the Houston 5-yardline and Penn State finishes off the drive with direct snap to Green, who scores a 5-yard touchdown.
Penn Ste is back in the game, now down 17-7 with 5:57 left in the first half.
While Houston's offense is firing on all cylinders early in the TicketCity Bowl at Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas, Penn State's is sputtering. The Nittany Lions went 3-and-out on their first drive and on their second drive, running back Silas Redd was stopped for a yard on first down and a loss on second down. A rush by quarterback Rob Bolden got Penn State close to the marker near midfield, but no cigar, as Penn State was 3-and-out for a second straight drive to start the game.
On Houston's ensuing drive, Penn State's All-American defensive tackle Devon Still was replaced by DaQuan Jones. Still has suffered from turf toe this week, so it looks like that might be bothering him early on.
Meanwhile, Houston's Case Keenum is still firing. After a touchback to start the drive, he passes the Cougars up to their own 44-yardline. Penn State finally gets a stop outside of scoring range on a 3rd-and-9, however, to force a punt.
Keenum and the Cougars took over from near midfield, and picked up a first down on their first set of downs before Keenum his Patrick Edwards for 26 yards down to the Penn State 8-yardline. Malcolm Willis was the man burned again by Edwards as he was on the early 40-yard touchdown pass.
Houston finishes the drive with an 8-yard pass from Keenum to Justin Johnson. With 2:35 left in the opening quarter, the Nittany Lions now trail 17-0.
The Houston offense continues to look sharp early in the TicketCity Bowl at Cotton Bowl stadium in Dallas. Cougars quarterback Case Keenum, fresh off a 40-yard touchdown pass on his first drive, hit Justin Johnson for a big gain of 23 to start his team's second drive, then continued to eat at the Penn State defense all the way down to the Nittany Lions 21-yardline.
The Penn State defense finally got a stop and forced a field goal attempt by Houston's Matt Hogan, but he drilled a 35-yarder to give the Cougars an early 10-0 lead.
Houston is really pushing the pace of the game on offense, hurrying up to the line and snapping the ball quickly to keep things moving. It'll be interesting to see how Penn State responds to the quicker action as the Lions have rarely faced a team that pushes it like Houston.
With 9:12 to play in the first quarter, Houston leads 10-0.
The 2012 TicketCity Bowl is underway at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas this Jan. 2 and Houston is off to a fast start. The Cougars' Case Keenum found wide receiver Patrick Edwards for 40 yards down the near sideline for a touchdown pass on Houston's first drive of the game.
The big scoring pass came on a 3rd-and-13 play and was the biggest pass play the Penn State defense has given up all season.
Keenum threw two passes for almost no yardage on the first drive and threw two incompletions. His two completions were big ones, though, and just minutes into the game, Keenum is already 4-6 for 81 yards and a touchdown.
If the Penn State defense doesn't buckle down soon, the Nittany Lions' chances in this game will take a big hit. The Penn State offense, which just went 3-and-out on its first drive, isn't built to play blow-fot-blow.
With 11:44 left in the first quarter, Houston leads, 7-0.
The Penn State Nittany Lions have had a pretty difficult season off the field, but they've enjoyed some success on the field this year and as a result will be playing in a New Year's Day (sort of) bowl game against the Houston Cougars. It will be a matchup of an explosive Cougars offense against a stifling Penn State defense, and the game will likely be won and lost by that matchup.
Here is all the information you need to find that game later this afternoon.
Game Date/Time: Monday, January 2, 12:00 p.m. ET
Location: Cotton Bowl, Dallas, Texas
TV: ESPNU / ESPN3
History: This is only the second Ticket City bowl, and it is the first appearance from either team.
We'll have plenty more on this game throughout the Bowl Season, so keep it locked to this StoryStream. For more on this and every bowl game, you can check out the SB Nation College Football Hub page. For more on the Nittany lions of Penn State, head over to Black Shoe Diaries.
For weeks, the focus of those in and around the Penn State community has been pretty squarely set on the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal and search for a new head coach to replace Joe Paterno. When Penn State faces Houston on Monday in the TicketCity Bowl at Dallas' Cotton Bowl Stadium, however, those things will fade to the background, at least for four quarters.
The Nittany Lions will be looking to notch their third 10-win season in the last four campaigns.A win would move their record to 10-3. In their way is a 12-1 Cougars team. Their only blemish came in the Conference-USA Championship game against Southern Miss on Dec. 3.
Led by Heisman Trophy-contending quarterback Case Keenum, Houston finished ranked No. 1 in the nation in points per game this season with 50.8 and first in passing yards per game with 443.8. The Cougars will likely offer a stern test to a Penn State defensive unit that has been almost equally as strong. The Lions finished ranked No. 5 in the nation in points allowed per game at 15.7. Watching those two units go head to head will likely be one of the highlights of college bowl season.
The battle of the Penn State offense vs. the Houston defense could be just as interesting, though. With the inconsistent Rob Bolden set to start at quarterback for the Lions in the wake of Matthew McGloin's injury suffered in an on-campus altercation with teammate Curtis Drake on Dec. 17, there's no telling what might be in store for a Penn State offense ranked No. 110 nationally in points per game with 19.8 and No. 95 in passing yards per game at 180.3.
Here are some things to look for in the game.
When Penn State has the ball...
-Penn State should look to establish the running game early in order to dictate the pace of the game and help keep Keenum in check by not allowing him to get on the field. With wide-receiver and part-time wildcat quarterback Curtis Drake at home for personal reasons, look for fellow part-time wildcat quarterback Bill Belton to help running backs Silas Redd and Stephfon Green find gaps on the ground.
-Bolden hasn't played much in the second half of the season, and really didn't start practicing to start the bowl game until McGloin's injury on Dec. 17. The pace at which he can shake of the game rust will likely dictate how much the coaches ask him to do later on, so keep an eye on his first few series.
-With Keenum on the field, Houston is always thinking "touchdown" offensively, so Penn State has to enter with that mindset as well. Red zone efficiency has plagued the Lions all season, and they've come away with field goals far more often than they should. If they're going to end the season on a high note, though, they're going to have to score six at least a few times. Penn State's defense is good, but probably not good enough to completely shut Keenum and Co. down. If Penn State is to win, the offense has to be an active participant in the effort, rather than simply dealing glancing blows and letting the defense do the heavy lifting.
When Houston Has The Ball...
-Interim head coach Tom Bradley always says that a game really comes down to four or five big plays, and that the team that makes them is usually wins. This will be especially true for the Penn State defense in this one. Keenum is going to do some damage, no matter how well the defense plays. The key for Penn State will be forcing a few key turnovers that can stop the Cougars' advance and set the offense up with some easy scoring drives. Do that, and suddenly stopping the 5,099-yard, 45-touchdown passer isn't quite so difficult.
-Despite the hype Houston's passing game gets, its running game isn't too bad, either. Both Charles Sims and Michael Hayes have eclipsed the 700-yard rushing mark this season, so Penn State's front seven needs to get after them. If the Lions can shut down the Cougars' running game, it will put more pressure on Keenum, which increases the odds he'll make a costly mistake. Look for All-American defensive tackle Devon Still to lead that charge for Penn State.
-Penn State's Tom Bradley on Keenum and the Houston offense at the final TicketCity Bowl press conference on Sunday: "Houston is different, contrasting styles. Their tempo is different than ours, defense is different. We haven't played an offense like this in a long time.
I think the most impressive thing, anybody that can throw 45 touchdown passes, only five interceptions, that's pretty darn good. Watching stats roll across the TV last night from other quarterbacks, they're not even in the same league as him. That's the one thing that is going to be a big challenge for us."
-Houston coach Tony Levine on the game: "I think it's a matchup of two very distinct and different styles really across the board. Our offense against their defense, their offense against our defense. Obviously the kicking game and styles of play.
When you look at them, at least what I did initially, is looked at Penn State statistically on paper. Once you see where they're ranked among 120 Division I A schools, doesn't take long once you hit 'play' on the DVD player to see why they are.
They're very physical in their style of play and in their stature. I said a couple weeks ago we have not played a team like Penn State all season. It's a tremendous challenge for us as a coaching staff, obviously for our team."
Houston is explosive offensively. Penn State is solid defensively. It's probably reasonable to expect the two units to meet in the middle and play a game in the mid-20s to high 30s, points wise. The outcome will probably hinge on what kind of success the Lions' offense can play against the Cougars defense. Can Bolden break out and become a threat in the passing game? Can the wildcat be effective as it was against Ohio State? If the answers to those two questions are yes, then Penn State will probably have a good chance to win. If the answers are no, it's going to be interesting. And that is why they play the games.
Pick: Penn State, 30-27
Penn State quarterbacks coach Jay Paterno told the Associated Press's Genaro C. Armas on Friday that sophomore quarterback Rob Bolden is likely to start for the Nittany Lions against Houston in the TicketCity Bowl on Monday. The team is hoping Matthew McGloin, injured in an on-campus altercation with teammate Curtis Drake on Dec. 17, will be available for emergency duty.
Paterno also had the following to say about his father, former head coach Joe Paterno, recovering from a fractured pelvis and undergoing treatment for lung cancer.
"Joe never sits around and complains about what's happened to him," his son, Jay, said Friday. "We're sitting there on his birthday and he said, 'Look, I've got 17 healthy grandkids, I've got give five healthy kids' ... Joe's always a guy who looks at the bright side (of) everything."
Armas reports defensive tackle and Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year Devon Still missed practice with a turf toe injury, but is expected to be ready to go by the time the bowl game rolls around.
Interim head coach Tom Bradley tweeted earlier Friday that the team will attend the Dallas Mavericks vs. Toronto Raptors basketball game.
For the latest on Penn State's trip to the TicketCity Bowl, stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh.
Penn State tight end Andrew Szczerba has dealt with his fair share of adversity during his Nittany Lion career. He sat out all of 2010 with a back injury, and in September of this season, his uncle, a police sergeant, was stabbed to death trying to arrest a suspect in New Castle, Del.
Now, as he and his teammates prepare for the TIcketCity Bowl in Dallas, he's coming to grips with the matchup against Houston being his final game in Blue and White as Sean Fitz of Lions 247 writes.
"I did put in for that sixth year, I did not get, so I won't be coming back next year," said Szczerba. "This will be my last game.
"It's a little bittersweet. I've been here for four and a half years and I think it's time for me to move on and see where life takes me after this," he said. "It would have been nice to come back, but it's also nice to move on and try something new."
Szczerba told Fitz he plans on trying to play professionally when his Penn State days are over.
The 23-year old Wilmington, Del. native caught 12 passes for 101 yards in 2011 and caught 14 passes for 116 yards in the course of his Penn State career.
For the latest on the TicketCity Bowl, stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh.
It's looking less and less likely that Penn State quarterback Matthew McGloin is going to play in the TicketCity Bowl against Houston on Jan. 2 as he continues to recover from a possible concussion sustained Dec. 17 in an altercation with teammate Curtis Drake.
That makes it ever more likely that former starter and current backup Rob Bolden will get the call for the Nittany Lions against the Cougars. The sophomore has thrown for 548 yards, a touchdown and four interceptions this season. He was replaced by McGloin as the started mid-way through the season. For that reason, he'll have to work back into the first team groove, something teammates and interim head coach Tom Bradley is confident he can do, writes Ron Musselman of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
"Is he going to be a little rusty? Probably," redshirt junior center Matt Stankiewitch said. "But hopefully we can get a lot of that rust out in practice."
Bolden took all of the snaps with the first-team offense Wednesday. Shane McGregor, a redshirt junior walk-on, is the backup. He played sparingly in two games this year, completing 1 of 4 passes for 12 yards.
"[Bolden's] done pretty well," Bradley said. "He keeps getting more comfortable every day, and he's working hard. It's just a matter of getting the reps again.
McGloin still has some time to get healthy, but the good bet now is probably that Bolden will start and see most, if not all, of the action.
Members of the Penn State football team toured Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Tex. on Wednesday ahead of their Jan. 2 matchup with Houston at the TicketCity Bowl in Dallas.
The tour included stops in the Cowboys' locker room, the Cowboys cheerleaders' locker room, the club where the Cowboys enter the field and the field level of the stadium itself.
Below is video of Penn State's visit, courtesy of GoPSUSports.com.
Less than a week away from Penn State's TicketCity Bowl matchup against Houston on Jan. 2, its quarterback situation remains in flux as Ron Musselman of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette tweets.
McGloin suffered a possible seizure and concussion-like symptoms after hitting his head in an altercation with teammate Curtis Drake back at Penn State's practice facility on Dec. 17. McGloin has started all three games under interim head coach Tom Bradley since Joe Paterno's firing on Nov. 9 in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal and has thrown for 1,571 yards, eight touchdowns and five interceptions this season.
If Bolden is called upon to start, he'll bring 548 yards, one touchdown and four interceptions to the table against the Cougars. He played a lot early in the season as he and McGloin split time. Post-Paterno, though, his role has been fairly limited.
For the latest on the TicketCity Bowl, stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh.
The Penn State football team is now in Texas preparing for the Jan. 2 TicketCity Bowl at Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas, and on Tuesday, interim head coach Tom Bradley had some news on players who did not make the trip.
Bradley said that quarterback and Sto-Rox product Paul Jones was left up north for academic reasons, as was cornerback Derrick Thomas. Jones missed the entire 2011 season after being ruled academically ineligible over the summer.
Bradley also said wide receivers Curtis Drake and Shawney Kersey stayed behind for personal reasons. The Philadelphia Inquirer's Joe Juliano got at explanation from Drake, who was involved an altercation with quarterback Matthew McGloin before the team left for Texas, in a pair of tweets.
"Basically after the incident with me and Matt (McGloin), I was tired and I just needed to step back and take a break," Drake said. "There was too much going on. There wasn't really one thing I can pinpoint, just a bunch of things, so I decided not to go."
Meanwhile, Bradley said McGloin is still being held out of practice and being evaluated by the medical staff daily.
For more on Penn State as it prepares for the TicketCity Bowl stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh.
Interim Penn State head coach Tom Bradley's team will be heading to Dallas for the TicketCity Bowl soon and so he took time to talk to GoPSUSports' Tony Mancuso about the matchup. Check out the video below.
On Sunday night as the bowl rumors spread fast and furious, a quote from Ticket City Bowl CEO Tom Starr made its way around twitter that certainly suggested the Penn State Nittany Lions were headed to Dallas. Starr said last night that the bowl would be "honored" to have Penn State.
On Monday, Starr elaborated on his comments, taking his conviction a step further. He harped on the sentiment that the acts of Jerry Sandusky should not be used to punish the present players.
Why did the abhorrent acts of one person, why does everybody want to drag the university down? What did the student-athletes on that team do? What did the faculty, the student body, the alumni, the fans do? They didn't do anything.
Starr went on to say that the Ticket City Bowl was "fortunate" to have the Nittany Lions. He said he had been working to set up this matchup for three to four weeks.
For more news and discussion on the Nittany Lions, visit SB Nation's Penn State blog, Black Shoe Diaries.
The Big Ten will send two representatives, Michigan and Wisconsin, to Bowl Championship Series games this season. The Badgers, winners of the inaugural Big Ten Championship game this past weekend, will face Oregon in the Rose Bowl on Jan. 2 while the Wolverines will face off against Virginia Tech in the Sugar Bowl on Jan. 3. He's a quick look ahead at what to expect in those games.
Wisconsin's offense has been unstoppable for much of this season and appears to especially be on a roll now after putting up 45 and 42 points against Penn State and Michigan State's solid defenses, respectively. Running back Montee Ball has eight touchdowns in his last two games while Russell Wilson tops the passing efficiency charts. Though the Ducks, led by running back LaMichael James, have a dangerous offense in their own right, they don't have a quarterback like Wilson. Expect him to be the difference in a shootout: Wisconsin 47 Oregon 38.
The Wolverines are known for the offensive dual-threat that is quarterback Denard Robinson, but their defense is ranked No. 7 in points allowed per game nationally at 17.2. Expect it to rise to the challenge against a Hokies offense averaging a pedestrian 28.5 points per game, good for just a No. 55 ranking nationally. If Michigan can keep the offensive momentum it used to put up 45 points against Nebraska and 40 against Ohio State in its last two games, it's hard to see this being much of a match: Michigan 38 Virginia Tech 20
Stay tuned for more picks of the other Big Ten bowls later on here at SB Nation Pittsburgh.
Penn State Athletics confirmed Sunday evening that the football team has accepted an invitation to the TicketCity Bowl and will face Houston at the Cotton Bowl near Dallas, Tex. on Jan. 2.
The Nittany Lions' acting athletic director, David Joyner, is looking forward to participating in the event.
"The Penn State Nittany Lion football team has accepted an invitation to play in the TicketCity Bowl on January 2 in Dallas, and we’re very thankful for the TicketCity Bowl selection committee’s recognition and support of this year’s team and our outstanding institution," Joyner said in a statement. "I know that our fans and our team will show Penn State’s true colors and character throughout our visit to Dallas and the Metroplex. We also congratulate and look forward to competing against the University of Houston in what should be a great and memorable game for all involved."
Penn State will celebrate its 44th bowl appearance at the Cotton Bowl and will look to improve its record to 3-0 all-time against the Cougars, who dropped their first game of the season just this past weekend when they were dropped by Southern Mississippi in the Conference-USA title game.
Given that, interim head coach Tom Bradley also reacted to news positively.
"We are excited to be playing a great Houston team in the TicketCity Bowl," Bradley said. "I’d like to thank the bowl committee for selecting us and let them know we are looking forward to playing in Dallas in the first bowl game of 2012. The opportunity to play in the TicketCity Bowl is fitting acknowledgement of the hard work, dedication and perseverance our student-athletes have exhibited during this especially challenging season. We are proud to represent the Big Ten Conference, our university, alumni and fans in the TicketCity Bowl."
A scheduled conference call with Bradley was postponed late Sunday because of technical difficulties. Please stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh for all the latest reaction from the team when it becomes available.
It appears that Penn State will face the Houston Cougars in the Ticket City Bowl on January 2nd.