Sunday, October 10, 2021

Rutgers Battled; BREP Nation Tailgate Another "

Despite 3 key tailgate players on IR for homecoming, BREP Nation put on another bowl-worthy performance, with everyone ready to go by 8:30 a.m. and the tailgate spot established 20 minutes later. 

Jennifer Labue, a multiple-game cornhole winner with son David until Kathy found her groove to give Team Hobo a last-second win, pointed the crew to a proper parking spots, making her the favorite to lead our search next out in early November vs. Wisconsin. If husband Dave drives her SUV in again, however, it's probably safest they bring up the rear. But he has 4 weeks to practice his parking skills on a vehicle 6x the size of his Miata days.

Chillin' Labues
It was great to see Dave's dad once again after about two years, and the usual crew was graced by a rare twice-in-one-season appearance by Kathy H, subjected to 58 minutes of Rutgers game action in which the defense let up big play after big play and the offense missed key opportunities in a 31-13 defeat vs. 11th-ranked Michigan State. 

The result on the field wasn't what we had hoped and bucked Bill's win guarantee earlier in the week, setting the Scarlet Knights back to .500 at 3-3 but with several winnable games on the schedule. Next is at Northwestern on Saturday at noon.

The outcome was different in the parking lot. Pete came through with fabulous breakfast "burrpete'os" and the necessary dressings. If you didn't top yours with sour cream and salsa, turn in your tailgater badge to the principal's office.

Bill's "Jersey tomato casserole" proved to be a hit, especially the batch with pork roll. Probably a good lesson to not bother with the veggie-only version, which wasn't touched as much. 

The patented Skurat tot casserole was business-as-usual: robust, cheesy, properly cooked. Delicious.

Selfie-Stick Eric to the Rescue
Dana came through with a tasty bagel spread seemed to have been devoured, leaving only a handful and some everything-bagel crumbs for him to steal from under our noses and take to his "other" friends in the yellow lot. (BREP Nation sources could not confirm rumors that Dr. Jacoby is known to buy 12-packs of beer to bring to parties, only to arrive with maybe 3-4 at best.). L'Chaim, Dana! Chris too.

"Breakfast bourbon" proved semi-popular for the crew, with several sampling the Vermont-made version infused with maple syrup. Sweet way to start the day, and one we may need to expand for a breakfast tailgate as a pancake topping. Solid idea from Andrea, if I recall.

Basil passes complimentary
skin-cancer screening
Appearances by the Burks friends and the Thurkauf twins and Frank added to the atmosphere. 

The crew packed up by 11:30, walk-in beers and bourbon in hand, and entered SHI(*) Stadium on time for the start. Rutgers wisely opened an additional entry gate; but with a disappointingly half-empty building, it's possible the low turnout made for such an easy and well-timed entrance.

Happier times before
MSU's offense went off
We've already got Kaitlyn working on improving the morale and turnout of fellow students. It was pretty weak sauce from the tens of thousands of students with access to free tickets and not showing up. 

Once seated, BREP Nation did everything possible to motivate the team. Dana was responsible alone for consecutive MSU penalties and a big offensive play after deciding to join us sometime in the second quarter. Yet our process of seat switching, Popcorn Pete and third-down air guitaring did little to change the outcome. 

Schiano's squad just isn't there yet talent-wise, but bright days are ahead, with five of our last six seemingly winnable games vs. similar competition -- Northwestern, Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana and Maryland. And if Penn State's starting QB is out for any length of time, who knows. 

Stay tuned to the blog for details on the next game and perhaps even the Oct. 30 Halloween extravaganza in Roselle Park. 

Everyone be well and please share any good pictures from MSU here!



Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Michigan State: Cruisin'. Cruisin'. For a Bruisin'.

It's time to look ahead after seeing the team I support -- and the other one I begrudgingly watched Friday night and help to fund via out-of-state tuition -- give up a combined 110 points to infinitely better teams. 

This Saturday it's  No. 11 Michigan State on the Banks. Noon kickoff. 

The Spartans are 5-0 and have feasted on cupcakes. Nebraska gift-wrapped it a W, and MSU's win vs. Miami may be its best, but that's even a borderline .500 team. 

So to me RU is hands down MSU's stiffest test. 

Heck, I'll even predict we win on homecoming day. So there, let it be said! 

And let's be real. Schiano and Rutgers OWN the chop. Not Michigan State. RU's going to be plenty pissed about MSU's breach of intellectual property.

Please start the roll call in the comments below. 

Saturday's forecast is iffy -- high 60s/low 70s and morning rain possible, so anyone with a canopy please bring it. At least we're under cover in the seats, and it won't be cold. 

As I missed the OSU debacle, perhaps y'all discussed the menu for MSU already; but if not, I'm happy to whip up a few Jersey Tomato Casseroles and others can bring sides (potatoes, bagels, etc.). 

Otherwise as it's our last game during official Oktoberfest (next one not until Nov. 6), that's another option if Chris or other wanna run (and as Michigan is home to one of the bigger U.S. Oktoberfests). I'd like to take a breather from intense grilling after back-to-backs for Delaware and UMD. Warming stuffs fine, but I don't have the energy to make custom egg orders for all.

Anyway, see everyone Saturday. Say 8:30 a.m. at the Wal-Mart? 

Sunday, September 26, 2021

Moving on to Rutgers- Ohio State tailgate

A lot can be said about the Rutgers-Michigan game yesterday, but regardless of how you want to spin it, remember where we were almost exactly 2 years ago today. Chris Ash was fired on September 29, 2019 after a 52-0 road load to Michigan. 

 
Our fearless leader putting Michigan loss behind him

Coach Schiano always says you enjoy a win or grumble over a loss for a day, and then you move on, so that’s what I’ll do today as they retire Eli’s number. (Thanks No 10. You will always be my favorite player for being great on and off the field.)  My only comment is I think we have some really fun tailgates and games coming up and better days ahead. We’ve been through the lowest of lows in so many ways the last few years on and off the field, and yesterday was an example of how much fun ( and nerve wracking!) it can be on the way back up.

Since Bill will be away next week visiting Stan in College Park, and I will not be able to make an early tailgate, Please use this post to start a discussion about what time you guys want to meet up, where do you want to meet up if not the usual place, what sort of tailgate you want to have, who will bring what, and specifically who is actually going to the game. BREP

I also expect Stanhead, Davidhead, Sharonhead, Erichead, and the Panda to be there



Sunday, September 19, 2021

Enjoy 3-0

After attending a beautiful memorial luncheon on a sunny Sunday for a dear friend we lost last July to ALS, I can't help but be reminded to appreciate each blessing and moment. 

Saturday was such an opportunity. 
Chef & Trusty Asst.

Blue-Egg Presentation
For yours truly, it was great being back on campus and under center (the grill) to celebrate Rutgers football, our alma matter, and the friendships we've developed over time, both here and for our University of Delaware friends rounding out our 25-30 person tailgate. 

The weather couldn't have been much nicer, and the grub not bad. 

On the field, Rutgers took care of business against a game but lesser-caliber Delaware Blue Hens. 

"Cruisin'. Cruisin'.
I ain't losin'."
It seems we may be past the days of awful losses to overmatched teams, and the win pushes Schiano's squad to 3-0 against nationally ranked B1G foes Michigan and Ohio State in successive weeks. Rutgers is a double-digit underdog in Ann Arbor for a 3:30 p.m. kickoff, but perhaps maybe the seemingly vanilla schemes to this point were just to throw off the Wolverines. We'll soon find out. 

Back in our tailgate...the turnout was fabulous. 

Surely we missed Tom, Chris and John, but were graced by several of Kathy's fellow UD alums and longtime friends. Fortunate in their case that Pete didn't bully them into downing the blue-green hard-boiled eggs he went through all the trouble to procure. Pete also did a great job with stocked coolers, and our other visitors came with tasty IPA.

The Black Lot folk also were graced by the vocal styings of Adam, who showed zero rust behind the mic, banging out some classics from the Roxx Armada catalogue.

Enough of my rambling. Here's a bunch of good photos of the festivities.

Well done B-REP Nation!




Stanhead & 2.4 BAC Erichead

"Loud. Louder than loud!"


Dana's money where his mouth is; well done!














Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Imagine Being Magically Whisked Away to...Delaware.

"Hi. I'm in...Delaware."

Wayne Campbell was on to something. 

The "First State" may be nondescript. 

A mystery to some. 

A pair of I-95 rest stops on the way to a sexier destination like...anywhere but New Jersey or Delaware. Or Mississippi for that matter.

Vexing to many; made all the more confusing that Delaware's state university selected a blue fowl as its mascot in 1939.

Then again, unlike a "Scarlet Knight," it's a real thing. A blue strain of the American gamecock. And years ago we were the equally lame Chanticleers -- fighting roosters.

And, of course, home to Papa Joe.

So let's be fair.

Delaware has its benefits beyond serving as the next Rutgers Football opponent. 

Kickoff of Saturday's Game 3 for the 2-0 Scarlet Knights is 3:30 p.m.

Let's meet up at Wal-Mart for the carpool at, say, 11-11:30 a.m.? (Solidify a time in the comments).

The forecast is shaping up nicely as of Wednesday night after some rain expected Thursday and Friday; but anyone with a canopy please bring just in case, if for no other reason than giving us some shade, too, if it ends up being sunny and mid-80s as projected.

As I've got 7 lbs. of sliced London broil for cheesesteak in the freezer and plan to buy more to accommodate an increase in expected visitors, I recommend we go with that as the main course. 

I'll also prep a big tray of home fries. And peppers and onions for the steaks.

Kathy's friends Janet and Tom are bringing caesar salad with chicken. 

So let's use the comment field to fill out the food and beverage selection.

And let's show Kathy's fellow U-Del alums a good time. We'll be joined by the aforementioned Hoffmans and their big-ass Suburban, plus Sharon and Rob of the Westfield Daniel clan. 

Assorted others may stop by, including Kaitlyn and her roommates, hopefully with sunscreen this time.

Let the discussion commence...and see y'all Saturday!

[Chef Hobo needs a sense of head count by Friday morning; will update list by the minute]

  • 2: Bill & Kathy (parking pass)
  • 1: Kaitlyn (+ roommates, other TBD)
  • 2: Tom & Janet Hoffman
  • 2; Sharon & Rob Daniel
  • 2: Pete & Sharon (e-tickets, parking pass)
  • 2: Adam & Sophia (e-tickets, mobile parking pass)
  • 2: Julia & Rashad (e-tickets)
  • 6: Eric & Andrea + brother Dave's family
  • 1: Larry (~1:30 p.m. ETA; mobile parking pass)
  • 4: Team Labue (parking pass)
  • 1: Basil
  • 2: Dana
OUT
  • Skurat
  • John
  • Tom

Thursday, September 2, 2021

Rutgers vs. Temple POSTPONED to Saturday

Please keep tabs of details on game info at Rutgers' homepage

If on Saturday as it sounds, I won't be there, and Chris uncertain as well. 

I'll make arrangements with Larry to drop off all the stuff with him, since I'll be in Saratoga tomorrow through Saturday night. 

I can either freeze the steak for next game, or give to Larry for you guys to enjoy assuming someone's going to grill. 

Use the comment field below for discussion.

Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Rutgers vs. Temple Roll Call

It looks like we may catch a break with the weather Thursday, assuming lingering hurricane effects clear after expected morning rain; so it's possible we'll be dry and with pleasant tailgate and game conditions vs. Temple. 

But if anyone has a canopy, please pack it just in case. I only have one.

There's a few things I need to address; too many things to put in comments to the last post. Just confirm briefly in the comment field to this post. 

Parking


The ticket office only had 2 years to get things straight, but didn't for this year's opener. It might actually work to our benefit.

We won't have hangtags for this week. Rest of the season we're OK. Just not on Thursday.

Our ticket guy asked for 5 names to put on the list for entry to the black lot. 

As of now, I'm going to suggest the following drivers just meet at/near the tailgate spot rather than Walmart. We'll do our best to get the lower lot if it's open. Otherwise we may be at the mercy of the dolts working the lots. 
  • Bill and Chris (2): Both in for game (solo) and tailgate; can carpool and set up camp
  • Pete and Sharon (2): tailgate + game
  • John and Dana: game only; working, arriving at kickoff
  • Dave + Family (4): tailgate + game
  • BREP (1): tailgate + game but leaving early
  • [Basil meeting us from work for tailgate + game]
The only folks yet to respond to the prior blog are Eric and Andrea. If coming to Thursday's game, please advise and we'll figure out offline who they'll drive in with; it can be me and/or Pete and Sharon.

Tom, if I recall, will be at the game as he's up for the football draft too on Friday night. 

Tailgate 


Seems the few folks to respond were OK with cheesesteaks. We'll provide for anywhere from 12-16, depending on Burks and Tom. Kaitlyn's likely to bring from 1-3 apartment mates. 
  • Bill: Steak, rolls and onions plus condiments; grill, tailgate tools
  • Chris: Tater tot concoction
  • Pete and Larry: Beer; Lites and presumably Yuengling
  • Dave: All soft drinks; water, Pepsi...er, Coke products
  • Tom: Chips, munchies
  • Needs: Paper products, foils, etc. for the season. I'll sift through what we have later but think it's primarily plastic utensils.

Ticket Distribution and Kickoff


I'll pawn off everyone's paper tickets for the season and ask someone else to handle all parking passes, since I'm already out for Ohio State and Chris is only coming to half the games it sounds. Someone else can run point on that duty.

For Thursday it looks like we'll have at least 3 extras (Bill, Pete's 2). I know Rutgers is pushing for a sellout but that's a clear reach on a worknight with a 6:30 p.m. kickoff.

Let's cross our fingers the bad weather's gone by morning. Either way, it'll be great seeing most of you again as BREP Nation!

Thursday, August 12, 2021

Three Weeks From Today


The feather duster is out on BREPNation.com!

It's time to wipe away almost two years of dust, borrow Skurat's overused power washer to clean the tailgate grill and locate everything we need for our return to the black lot after almost a 2-year hiatus. 

It all begins three weeks from tonight -- Rutgers vs. Temple, 6:30 p.m. at SHI* Stadium!

Just a few logistical points, in case anyone was wondering.

RU is relying largely on a mobile-ticket setup this year, which got me mentally prepared to manage 1,300 texts a week about who's coming to a game, or not or to whom we're transferring tickets and then to have those tickets transferred to someone else. But our ticket agent called Tuesday to say he preemptively selected old-fashioned paper tickets for us. So I'll distribute those at or before the first tailgate.

I forgot to ask our agent, but I'm guessing, too, the parking tags will be physical rather than mobile (as they'll be for most ticket holders). We've got 5 again.

I can't tell for sure but the website makes it look like the lower Black lot's open again. We'll see.

Regarding Temple, it's a bit early to discuss, but if we're keeping with tradition and going the route of the opponent's city's primary food or pigout stop, I'm happy to grill cheesesteaks, which seem popular, with homefries on the side. I'm off that Thursday and Friday and can pretty much head up at any time (2:30-3?), but recognize some in the group will be working and/or bypassing the tailgate (including BRESM - Big Red Elvis Servant's Mom). 

Final points:

- As a Delaware alum, we've invited a bunch of Kathy's friends from her days as a Blue Fowl; so it should be a big crew and a fun time on Sept. 18. 

- We'll be visiting BRES Stan from College Park at UMD the same weekend as Ohio State on Oct. 2 (he wins out over Kaitlyn for dual "Parents Weekend" days, since the kid'll be back at RU residing at Newell on Cook and likely at most RU games), so if someone's in need of two tickets or wanna trade for another lemme know. 

- We need to locate the newly repackaged Schaefer. Keep an eye out.

- Andrea, don't get any ideas about becoming a Terrapin fan just because there's another one among us now, compounding Dana's pain as a UMD parent. It's merely for grossly expensive educational purposes only.

The 2021 home schedule:

- Thursday, Sept. 2, Temple, 6:30 p.m.

- Saturday, Sept. 18, Delaware, 3:30 p.m.

- Saturday, Oct. 2, Ohio State, TBD

- Saturday, Oct. 9, Michigan State, Noon

- Saturday, Nov. 6, Wisconsin, TBD (Breeders Cup Saturday)

- Saturday, Nov. 27, Maryland, TBD (Thanksgiving Weekend)