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The HUB A Surprisingly Safe, Fun Place To Watch Penn State Football

When I got to the HUB around 2 p.m. Saturday to watch and cover Penn State’s season opener, I wasn’t sure what to expect.

Fellow football writers Gabe Angieri and Will Pegler set up shop with me in front of the big TV near the building’s Pollock Road entrance. We were too focused on getting our laptops ready for the game to notice, but the lobby filled up by kickoff time. It wasn’t until the crowd erupted with a roar that I noticed what a cool environment we had going.

We chose the HUB since none of us had cable in our apartments and dorms, so the background crowd was a cool added benefit. Although most folks were probably with friends in dorm rooms or apartments, the HUB was a neat place to safely have a crowd of people celebrate (and suffer) together during a football game.

The room was probably filled with around 50 people in total, all masked up in comfortable chairs 6 feet apart from each other. At one point, a HUB employee brought in another TV to set up across the aisle because folks were sitting on the floor to get in on the fun.

The room consisted of a mix of students, university employees, and even some older alumni. It’s hard to safely experience a crowd-type environment these days, so having authentic heckling and cheering drown out the fanless TV broadcast was a refreshing change of pace. It was almost like being in Beaver Stadium! OK, maybe not, but it was still fun.

Some freshman said that Findlay Commons had a similar situation going until social distancing was violated and RAs needed to break it up. Perhaps for the Ohio State game next week, Penn State will put together some safe, public watch parties for students.

But if you want to stay coronavirus-free and still enjoy a Penn State football game with a crowd, the HUB’s not a bad choice. We’ll most likely be back there, too.

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About the Author

Ryan Parsons

Ryan is a redshirt senior majoring in business and journalism from "Philadelphia" and mostly writes about football nowadays. You can follow him on Twitter @rjparsons9 or say hi via email at [email protected].

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