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James Franklin Says The Numbered Helmet Is Just a Decoration

By Ben Jones

Change is a part of life, but a recently tweeted photo of a Penn State football helmet isn’t a sign of things to come, Nittany Lion head coach James Franklin told StateCollege.com on Monday night.

Penn State fans are quick to notice every little thing that goes on with the program, so when freshman running back Nick Scott tweeted out a photo of a Penn State football helmet with the number 24 on it (Scott’s number) fans were all over social media guessing what that might mean.

The real reason for the helmet? It’s a decoration in Franklin’s office.

“I don’t know where the helmet came from. I know the history of it because people told me that Penn State used to have numbers on the helmets,” Franklin said over the phone. “Basically nothing has changed. It is sitting there in my office. It has been there since before I got the job…That’s the whole story.”

And so fans (and media) can file this particular saga away as another example of a social media posts being misinterpreted. Certainly, Scott’s photo gave everyone a reason to speculate, but in the end it turned out to be nothing more than a photo and a very dust-free helmet.

As far as any uniform changes in the future, Franklin has always supported the side of Penn State traditions in his first six months on the job. What that means for names on the jerseys — a change the team voted for in 2012 — is still up in the air although Franklin didn’t address that particular talking point on Monday.

Anything can happen down the road, but for now it’s simply time for the Penn State program to worry about how it plans to beat UCF in just over a month, and worry about what it will wearing Aug. 30 at a later date.

Ironically — judging by fan reaction — adding numbers to the helmets appears to be at least one modification that they would support, but it doesn’t seem to be in the works anytime soon.

Mystery solved.

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