Pat Freiermuth ‘Frustrated’ By Preseason Rumors
Penn State football has certainly had a whirlwind of an offseason, and star tight end Pat Freiermuth is no exception.
Reports of a possible opt out and rumors surrounding the Big Ten season certainly took a toll on him these past few months.
“I have no idea how that [rumor] started,” Freiermuth said. “I think it was from a GrubHub driver or something like that. I don’t know, I’m not going to get involved in that right now.”
The tight end learned about the report while practicing with quarterback Sean Clifford. Just like most Nittany Lions fans, he saw it on Twitter.
“We get on Twitter and [Pat]’s like ‘well I guess people think I’m opting out now,’ and it was never even a conversation with coach Franklin or myself,” Clifford said. “Again, I think people were trying to be the first to it, and it wasn’t even true. I would just say, make sure your facts are straight before you start getting online.”
Clifford was clearly frustrated with how the news broke and wanted to stand up for his star tight end. Freiermuth explained that he never opted out or unenrolled in classes, but it was something he thought about and discussed with his parents. Swirling rumors about the whether the Big Ten season would come back made the decision even more difficult.
“It was definitely frustrating,” Freiermuth said. “I had a couple deadlines in my head…but I felt like I kept pushing them back just because I still wanted to play for Penn State.”
He explained that several outlets’ reports of a Big Ten return before an official decision was made was frustrating.
“I just wish there was more transparency,” Freiermuth explained.
His frustration extended to the conference itself, as well. It was hard to watch other schools play while Penn State was sidelined.
“It was definitely frustrating because those schools were doing the right protocols that we were doing, and to be honest I think we were doing more,” Freiermuth said. “I just think that we were in the right place to play.”
But when the season was officially called back on, all the previous frustration disappeared for a moment.
“I was like a baby on Christmas morning, I was so happy,” Freiermuth said. “Me and my roomates started jumping up and hugging each other. It’s football, everyone on this team loves football.”
This also created a special moment on the Big Ten Network, when he joined James Franklin’s interview to announce to the world that he’d be playing. He just so happened to be in the building, so Franklin asked him to pop his head in and shut down the rumors.
All in all, Freiermuth is very happy with his decision to stay despite a long, frustrating road to get to that decision.
“At the end of the day, I still owe so much more to this Penn State community than it owes me,” Freiermuth said. “It’s just an amazing experience at Penn State, I just love every aspect of it, and I think that I can never repay the stuff that Penn State has given to me. I need to play another year to show my gratitude to Penn State.”
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