James Franklin Addresses Florida State Rumors Following Rutgers Game
Penn State football head coach James Franklin addressed rumors surrounding his potential departure from Happy Valley at his postgame press conference following the Nittany Lions’ 27-6 victory over Rutgers at Beaver Stadium.
“I think I addressed this earlier in the year. There is nobody that would want this not to be talked about more than me,” Franklin said. “I’m hoping this is going to be over very quickly. Like I told you, I love Penn State, I love our players, and I don’t see that changing any time soon. [Job rumors are] a little bit the nature of college football, but I love what we’re doing here. I don’t see that changing any time soon. Hopefully, all this conversation will be over very shortly.”
Franklin was linked with Florida State’s head coaching job, which was left vacant following Willie Taggart’s firing, earlier this week. The Orlando Sentinel reported that the two sides had “mutual interest” in getting a deal done, and this definitely isn’t the first rumor surrounding Franklin’s job that’s popped up towards the end of a college football season.
Penn State’s sixth-year head coach was linked with USC’s head coaching job prior to the Nittany Lions’ final home game of the 2018 season. Those obviously came to nothing, as Clay Helton was retained as the Trojans’ head coach for the 2019 season.
“It’s that time of year when all this stuff happens,” Franklin said in response to the USC rumors last year. “Like always, we’re completely focused on Maryland. I don’t think it’s fair or right to even talk about that job.”
Franklin was also linked with Texas A&M’s head coaching gig during the 2017 season when Kevin Sumlin fell out of favor in College Station. That also came to nothing, and the Aggies replaced Sumlin with Jimbo Fisher prior to the 2018 season.
Although some fans may have complaints about James Franklin’s game management, it’s hard to argue against his results. He’s led Penn State to double-digit win totals in three of the last four seasons — a feat the team hasn’t accomplished since the mid-1990s. Joe Paterno’s team went 10-2, 12-0, 9-3, and 11-2 in the 1993, 1994, 1995, and 1996 seasons, respectively.
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The conference believes the move will give teams the flexibility they need to keep players and staffs safe.
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