Reporters certainly have a herd-like mentality. Recently, the story they are running with is that Rand Paul has to make it clear to mainstream Republicans that he is not his dad and that he needs to make clear to libertarians that he is close enough to his dad to vote for. Two very recent examples are this article in the Daily Beast and this one on Real Clear Politics. I know with a military coup brewing in Egypt, a civil war in Syria, IRS-gate, NSA-gate and Benghazi-gate, reporters are having a tough time finding real news to write about but I think if they tried they could find something.
I don't remember Barack Obama having even a single question about his drunk-driving, wife-beating, bigamist of a father. So why the incessant harping on the Rand/Ron relationship? I even don't remember so much being written about George H.W. Bush vs. George W. Bush. Of course maybe that was because George H.W. Bush didn't really have a movement of people behind him as he had the personality of a guidance counselor.
Anyway, I think it's pretty obvious what is going to happen with Ron Paul supporters and Rand Paul. 70% of them will go with Rand, especially those at the top of the movement. If Rand wins, they have a real chance of getting into a position of power, something they never really even dreamed would ever happen. Some of the rank and file who have unrealistic expectations and also believe that Jews and Freemasons run the world for Lucifer, might not, but who cares. If Rand Paul can appeal to social conservatives as well as tea partiers, it doesn't matter. Also, I think most libertarians realize that if Rand Paul is elected President, he would be the most libertarian President since at least Calvin Coolidge or Grover Cleveland and that is definitely something to strive for. Now that Ron is not running, who exactly is their other choice? Their really isn't one, especially not for the nitpicking set. Heck, they probably wouldn't even go for Ted Cruz (who isn't as libertarian as Rand Paul) simply because they would be too bothered about whether or not he would be considered a "natural born citizen" under English Common Law.