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Penn State Defensive End Smith Vilbert Available For Rose Bowl

Penn State head coach James Franklin announced redshirt junior defensive end Smith Vilbert will be available for the Rose Bowl, according to a video from 247Sports’ Mark Brennan taken at a Disneyland press conference Wednesday.

“He played really well last year. He’s done a great job of training and lifting and doing all the things he needed to do all season long,” Franklin said. “So he’s available for the game.”

Vilbert was not expected to make any appearances this year after Franklin announced the defensive lineman would be unavailable for the 2022 season during an October 4 press conference. No reason was given at the time, though Vilbert was practicing throughout the year – even earning a team developmental squad player of the week nod.

The Rose Bowl will serve as Vilbert’s first opportunity to participate in a game since last season’s Outback Bowl. In the Nittany Lions’ postseason matchup with Arkansas, Vilbert tallied three sacks while filling in for a Penn State defense ravaged by opt outs.

Outside his stellar Outback Bowl performance, Vilbert has failed to make much of an impact on the stat sheet, recording just four tackles elsewhere.

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About the Author

Sam Fremin

Sam is a senior from Ashburn, Virginia, majoring in journalism and political science & minoring in German and creative writing. He is a Dallas Cowboys fan who relishes the misery of Eagles fans. All hate messages can be sent to [email protected] or @SamFremin on Twitter.

He may or may not read every single comment he gets.

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