Dear James Franklin,
How are you? It’s me, Ryan Parsons. I’m a senior at Penn State, the school you coach football at, and I’ve been covering your team for the past two years.
Ever since you brought up a potential “beers in the basement” event for media members, my mind has been running. As a student media member, I wouldn’t expect to typically get an invite. However, I think I can change your mind by the time you’re done reading this letter.
And don’t forget all the fun times we’ve had! Like the time we got trapped in the bowels of Kinnick Stadium together and that other time I walked by you my freshman year and said hello. And who can forget when we bonded over how loud Maryland’s band was just a few weeks ago?
Anyway, here are my main points:
I’m A Nice Guy. I’m A Chill Guy.
I think we’d get along! I’m from Yardley, which is just a few minutes away from your hometown of Langhorne, Pennsylvania, and I even worked part-time at Langhorne’s world-famous amusement park Sesame Place. I grew up in the Pennsbury School District, so I understand if you have some beef as a Neshaminy man.
I also think that I’m just a swell, chill guy to sit down and have a beer with. Below is a picture of Will Pegler (another esteemed member of the Onward State football beat) and myself having a fun time at State College’s Brewery. I think you’d fit right in with us. He should get an invite, too, by the way.
You Know Ball, I Know Beer
Despite turning 21 fewer than six months ago, I think I have a pretty solid understanding of the beer and craft beer world. Just check out my Untappd profile. Already 55 beers logged! I think I have pretty good taste in cold beverages.
A lot of people say that I know ball, but let’s be honest: you know ball much more than I do. I can pick out some good brews to bring to your basement, and you can impart some of your football knowledge to me. It sounds like a win-win situation.
I Think It Will Legitimately Be Beneficial
It seems like one of the main goals of this off-the-record session will be to give media members a better understanding of how things work behind the scenes. When it comes to facilities and contracts and non-football things, it appears that there are some things you want to say but really can’t publically.
I’m currently a senior, but I’m using my extra year of eligibility to stick around for one more semester to grab a second degree in journalism. Not only does this mean I’ll be able to cover your and your team with even more objectivity and fairness than before, but it also means I can pass down the knowledge you share at the meeting with Onward Staters for years to come.
You’ll be here for at least 10 more years. Don’t you want that snarky student blog (that also has great football coverage) to have a better relationship with you? It all can start with me.
I Have An Important Student Perspective
While the media’s thoughts on you and your program are certainly important, there’s also a large number of students who have input on Penn State football. As both a student and a media member, my perspective is probably going to be among the best you’ll get. I know what the student body is thinking, but I can sift through the dumb takes as well.
In conclusion, I will be waiting for my invite.