The man in the green and white hat in the above video is Patrick Chambers, the first-year men's basketball coach at Penn State. This afternoon, Chambers handed out Big Macs to the first 200 Penn State students to come to a campus McDonald's with a ticket stub from Saturday's huge win over Nebraska. Chambers's move, described here so perfectly as an "unexpected show of charity," followed his decision to have the Nittany Lions hold the ball at the conclusion of their 67-51 victory. That's because any time Penn State basketball scores at least 70 points, fans get free Big Macs. Chambers cost the fans their free burgers, but he was goodhearted enough to own up to it and make amends.
The lesson here is that sportsmanship still matters. But sportsmanship need not trump the high ideal of fostering a solid community, and Happy Valley is nothing if not a solid community. Joe Paterno, were he still with us, would no doubt be warmed by the news of Chambers's magnanimous gesture. It's really just an extension of the bedrock values Joe Paterno taught everyone at Penn State, bedrock values upon which Penn State still stands with such pride.