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SPORTS
August 6, 2014 | By Mike Sielski, Inquirer Columnist
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. - James Franklin began his first media day as Penn State's head football coach by looking out at a room filled with hundreds of reporters, smiling big, and asking questions. "How's everybody doing?" Murmur, murmur. "How was everybody's summer?" Murmur, too short, murmur. "Short?" Murmur, murmur. "You guys look shocked," Franklin said, "like it's unusual to start it this way. " It was. Franklin took 14 questions over the next 35 minutes Monday afternoon, and after each media member had taken the microphone and identified himself or herself, Franklin made sure to use the questioner's name in his answer, regardless of whether he'd ever met the person before.
SPORTS
August 6, 2014 | BY JAKE KAPLAN, Daily News Staff Writer kaplanj@phillynews.com
STATE COLLEGE - James Franklin opened his first preseason camp as Penn State's head football coach yesterday, and unlike many summers in recent memory the Nittany Lions started practice devoid of competition for the starting quarterback position. Reigning Big Ten Freshman of the Year Christian Hackenberg is not only PSU's clear-cut starter but as a sophomore could emerge as one of college football's best at the position. The former five-star recruit is looking to build on an impressive debut campaign in which he threw for 2,955 yards, completed 58.9 percent of his attempts and tossed 20 touchdowns to 10 interceptions while starting all 12 games for then-coach Bill O'Brien.
SPORTS
August 4, 2014 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Penn State kicker Sam Ficken had experienced spring practices conducted by Joe Paterno and Bill O'Brien during his career, but he'd never seen anything like some of the methods carried out in the spring by new head coach James Franklin. Ficken understood that coaches needed to simulate pressure situations that a kicker might encounter late in a game, such as making an entire team run laps if a field goal at the end of a practice went wide of the uprights. However, he learned from the very first day of drills that Franklin had a different approach.
SPORTS
July 31, 2014 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
CHICAGO - Reading Bill Belton's tweets over the last week or two, you would think Penn State's running back from South Jersey felt he was being disrespected. Check out two from July 21. He wrote in one, "Underrated and overlooked . . . damn I'm excited for the season to begin. " The other, accompanied by a publication's view of the Big Ten's top five running backs plus three more to watch - no, his name did not appear - said: "First thing I see every morning. " "It's motivation, that's all," Belton said Tuesday at Big Ten Football Media Days.
SPORTS
July 31, 2014 | BY JACK McCARTHY, For the Daily News
CHICAGO - The Penn State community has had several months to absorb James Franklin's outsized personality and infectious enthusiasm. This week the Big Ten got its first long look at the 42-year-old Nittany Lions coach. At roundtable discussions with reporters, Franklin repeatedly answered questions about his style, philosophy and prospects. At a meet-and-greet with fans outside a hotel ballroom, he shook hands like a vote-seeking politician, shared hugs and signed autographs.
SPORTS
July 30, 2014 | By JACK McCARTHY, Special to the Daily News
CHICAGO - The darkest days of Penn State football may be receding as the focus moves back onto the field. While sanctions remain against Nittany Lions football in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky sexual abuse scandal the subject barely came up at yesterday's Big Ten football media day. About the closest new coach James Franklin came to addressing NCAA punishments came when asked to compare building up his former Vanderbilt program and obstacles...
NEWS
July 30, 2014 | By Jonathan Tamari, Inquirer Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - Five U.S. representatives from Pennsylvania have asked the NCAA to rescind the penalties imposed on Pennsylvania State University for its leaders' handling of the Jerry Sandusky child sex-abuse scandal. "Continuing these unprecedented sanctions harms innocent student athletes and further erodes the increasingly specious credibility" of the NCAA, the five lawmakers wrote in a July 24 letter to Mark Emmert, president of the organization that oversees college sports. The representatives cited an April 9 Commonwealth Court ruling that sharply questioned the validity of a consent decree between the NCAA and Penn State imposing the penalties.
SPORTS
July 30, 2014 | By Joe Juliano, Inquirer Staff Writer
CHICAGO - James Franklin greeted the audience Monday at his first Big Ten football media day by joking that he had chosen to walk up the stairs to his room rather than go to his floor in an elevator that didn't have the Penn State logo on its door. Given that Big Ten coaches by and large are not a jovial bunch, at least when they're addressing a crowd of media, Franklin got everyone's attention right away. The Nittany Lions' rookie head coach filled his allotted 15 minutes speaking of team depth, quarterback Christian Hackenberg, his inexperienced offensive line and next month's trip to Ireland.
SPORTS
July 29, 2014 | BY JOHN McGONIGAL, For the Daily News
STATE COLLEGE - Penn State has hired Sandy Barbour as athletic director, university president Eric Barron announced at a news conference Saturday. Barbour, 54, spent a decade as the AD at California-Berkeley before leaving her position about a month ago, will begin her new job on Aug. 18. "When you spend a professional lifetime serving institutions and most importantly students, you dream of coming to a program like Penn State," said Barbour, who is the first woman AD in Penn State history.
SPORTS
July 29, 2014 | By Mike Jensen, Inquirer Columnist
When she makes her first coaching hire, there's no way new Penn State athletic director Sandy Barbour can or will hire a Sandy Barbour. Coaches who get pushed out at big-time schools rarely get hired the same year at bigger-time schools. Athletic director, however, is a different job. Athletic director at Penn State in 2014 may still be a unique job. Hiring Barbour, who was let go earlier this year after a 10-year run at the University of California, suggests that no highly regarded AD at a school of reasonable size and strong ambition would go to Happy Valley.
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