Tag Archives: James Franklin

Former Player Sues Penn State and James Franklin

A lawsuit has come out revealing hazing allegations involving the Penn State Football program and its players. Former Penn State Isaiah Humphries claims to have been hazed by former teammates Damion Barber, Yetur Gross-Matos, Micah Parsons, and Jesse Luketa. In the lawsuit, Humphries names Penn State, James Franklin, and Barber as defendants.

The hazing allegations are of both sexual and threatening nature. There are several key points that Humphries mentions in the lawsuit that build his case.

  • Forcing victims on the ground and shoving their genitals in their face or putting them between the victims’ buttocks and humping them.
  • Jesse Luketa threatened to gun down Humphries if he ever visited “his city” in Canada.
  • Players would say “I am going to Sandusky you” in the locker room in reference to the Jerry Sandusky case.
  • Hazing occurred in places on campus such as the Lasch Building.
  • Coaches witnessed the hazing but did not do anything to stop it.
  • Underclassmen were threatened with sexual assault.

Humphries entered the transfer portal after the 2018 season and claims in the lawsuit that he did so because of the hazing. He ultimately decided to go to the University of California. He sat out the 2019 season because of transfer rules.

Humphries’ lawyer for the case is attorney Steven F. Marino. Marino is the same lawyer who filed a lawsuit against the James Franklin and the university in the fall of 2019. He represented former team doctor Scott A. Lynch, who filed suit because he claims James Franklin urged him to have injured players return to the field.

More to come as more details come out, players react, and the university and Coach Franklin speak to the media.

Penn State Extends James Franklin through 2025; Now, It Is Time to Start Appreciating Him

Rumors swirled throughout the week that James Franklin may be receiving a contract extension after his Penn State Football Team won their 10th game for the third time in four years. Those rumors came true on Friday when Penn State’s Committee on Compensation unanimously approved a new deal for the Penn State Head Football Coach. Although the official terms have not been released to the public just yet, the deal will run through the 2025 season.

This is excellent news for Penn State as they keep one of the best coaches in the country. Here is Franklin’s tweet after his extension went public:

Penn State has had quite a run under James Franklin since 2016. As you can see here, the Nittany Lions have been one of the best programs throughout the country over the last four years.

The “Underappreciated” Coach

That right there is the definition of a model of consistency. But, Senior punter Blake Gillikin has described Coach Franklin as “underappreciated” in recent talks with the media. In my opinion, he is downright disrespected by some in the Penn State fan base and quite honestly, I am sick and tired of it.

James Franklin is one of the best head coaches in the country. And that is not just my opinion. The stats back that up and national writers and analysts say the same exact thing. Bruce Feldman of The Athletic is one College Football writer who certainly understands how great of a coach Franklin is. In an article from before the 2018 season, Feldman had this to say about Franklin.

“… you’re a fool if you don’t think Franklin is one of the 10 best coaches in the sport right now. If I’m ranking the Top 5 coaches in college football right now, Franklin’s one of them.”

You can read the full article here, but a subscription to The Athletic is required.

But, that is just the opinion of one of the most respected College Football writers in the country. Unfortunately, there are some Penn State fans throughout the country who do not see James Franklin as that Top 5 coach. Here are some examples.

Since 2016, Penn State has a record of 41-11, with a winning percentage of 78.8 percent. How many Power 5 conference teams have a better winning percentage than Penn State during that span? Six, just six. Clemson, Alabama, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Georgia, and Wisconsin. What programs around the country have we outperformed during that stretch? LSU, Washington, Michigan, and Notre Dame, just to name a few.

Yes, winning on average ten games a year is very mediocre football. What else would we expect from James Franklin and Penn State?

Yes, I hope Penn State wins the National Championship next year, too. With James Franklin as the Head Coach it is reasonable to say they have a chance every year. But, Penn State has not won a National Title since 1986. Did you run out of patience when Joe Paterno was leading Penn State to an unbeaten season in 1994 and not being named National Champions? Or losing heartbreaking games on the road in 2005 and 2008 as Penn State’s only defeats? If 2020 is finally the time to call it quits, then I am more than happy to have this “fan” find another team to cheer for when they win it all and bash them when they come up just short.

 

Sir, believe it or not, some bowl projections have Penn State going to the Rose Bowl. THE ROSE BOWL. Is that a mediocre bowl game? Penn State went to the Rose Bowl in 2016 and lost 52-49 in an all-time classic. The team that beat them had the #3 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft at QB in Sam Darnold and one of the top wide receivers in the NFL today in Juju Smith-Schuster. Then in 2017, Penn State went to another New Years’ 6 Bowl in the Fiesta Bowl and won it against Washington. That is a pretty good looking participation trophy sitting in the Penn State trophy case.

I am not even sure if this is true and nor do I care enough to look it up. But, how much did this fan miss any of the players that left? I am sure he did not miss them at all. Did he miss Danny Dalton’s 0 catches for 0 yards this year for Boston College? But, I am sure he was on his feet cheering when Lamont Wade was wrecking havoc against Ohio State this year.

Players leave programs and it is not always because of the head coach. Some leave because of playing time. Danny Dalton is a good example of this, as Pat Freiermuth beat him out in 2018. Some players leave because of family matters, as well. But, yes, please blame James Franklin for an 18-22 year old college kid making a grown up decision.

Don’t Hate, Appreciate

Penn State fans: we are so lucky to have James Franklin as the Head Football Coach at Penn State. Ask Vanderbilt how lucky we are. Franklin posted back-to-back 9 win seasons at Vanderbilt before he left for Penn State. AT VANDERBILT. Before Franklin got there, the Commodores went 2-10 in the two seasons prior. And since Franklin left, they are just 27-47 with a winning percentage of 36.5 percent.

I know Penn State fans are grateful for the job Bill O’Brien did in 2012 and 2013 in keeping the program together through sanctions. But, not as many fans are grateful for the job James Franklin has done after O’Brien.

Still dealing with the NCAA sanctions, in 2014, Franklin took the eventual National Champions to double overtime at home and won the Pinstripe Bowl with 65 total scholarship players. According to Franklin, due to injuries and redshirt players, that number got down to 41 during the season. In 2015, he led them to another bowl game despite not having his program back to full scholarship numbers. Then, since 2016, all he has done is win.

  • 2016 Big Ten Title
  • Rose Bowl Appearance
  • Fiesta Bowl Victory
  • 3 undefeated seasons at home
  • 3 10-win seasons
  • 2 11-win seasons
  • 2 Top-10 AP Poll finishes

The numbers show that James Franklin is one of the top college football coaches in America. Now, that he is receiving a contract extension to stay at Penn State, it is now time to appreciate just how great of a coach he is.

 

 

 

 

Week 9 Predictions: Michigan State Spartans

As I wrote earlier, this is the final game in a 3-game test for the Nittany Lions. There is a reason why they are only 6.5 point favorites heading into Spartan Stadium–they don’t play well out there. Penn State hasn’t won  in East Lansing since 2009. Michigan State isn’t very good, but has had an off week to prepare and has another off week after this week, which means their focus for the past 2 weeks has been entirely on upsetting the Nittany Lions. Let’s dive into predictions.

Week 9.png

Brandon Musso (7-0) & (4-3) vs. The Spread

The last two years of this matchup have not played in Penn State’s favor. Michigan State has had their number, dishing them a loss in East Lansing in 2017 and another at Beaver Stadium in 2018. Penn State comes into this game still undefeated and this will provide a serious threat to that record.

The key to this game is Penn State starting fast and playing with extreme discipline. The Spartans are a well coached team that will jump on the opportunity to capitalize on the Nittany Lions’ mistakes.

If Penn State can clean up their mistakes with both on the field play and coaching, they can manage to come out on top in East Lansing Saturday.

I think Penn State starts early and ends up leaving with a close victory.

Penn State: 27 Michigan State: 20

Kraigen Rasalla (7-0) & (2-5) vs. The Spread

Michigan State has been a thorn in Penn State’s side the last two seasons, pulling off the upset in both 2017 and 2018. They have the opportunity to spoil Penn State’s perfect season, yet again, if they can pull off a third straight upset of the Nittany Lions.

Penn State will have to find more consistency in their offense, as they jumped out to a 21-0 lead, but went stagnant against Michigan. They also need much more out of the running backs, as they ran for just 88 yards as a group, with 44 coming on one play by Ricky Slade.

Yes, Michigan State has allowed on average 36 points against Ohio State and Wisconsin in their last two contests. But, coming off a bye at home, this is the perfect week for them to correct their problems from the first half of the season.

Penn State wins. But, it will be a very uncomfortable victory in East Lansing.

Penn State: 17 Michigan State: 10

Cory Lestochi (6-1) & (3-4) vs. The Spread

The whole week I was going to pick Michigan State to win. Penn State has played so poorly against the Spartans as of late and it doesn’t help that the Green & White has had two weeks to prepare.

That being said this is the worst Michigan State team Penn State’s played in the past 3 seasons and the Lions are bringing their best defense in a long time into town. Additionally, the Penn State offense has shown the ability to prevent turnovers even in hostile environments like Iowa.

Michigan State won’t be able to run the ball and I have to believe this defensive line is tired of not getting to MSU’s magician-like quarterback when he scampers around the field.

Michigan State’s season is teetering on the edge of collapse with players transferring midseason. Wouldn’t be shocked if Penn State loses a close one, but I am going to go bold and say this game is the straw that breaks the Spartans back emotionally. Penn State jumps on them early and unlike the Wolverines last week, Michigan State doesn’t pick themselves up nor do they have the playmakers to do so anyway.

Penn State: 35  Michigan State 6

Opinion: HC James Franklin Wasn’t Wrong in Idaho Rout & Here’s Why

I honestly can’t believe I have to write this piece, but after the 79-7 rout of Idaho, some fans criticized Penn State’s head coach, James Franklin for running up the score. These are also the same people that will always find a reason to be upset at the head coach. If you can’t be happy with the performance on Saturday, you’ll never be happy. That being said, I feel the reason some people are upset at Franklin is simply because they don’t know the unwritten rules of football.

Read more

Number of Former Players and Parents Support Franklin during Lawsuit News

After news broke about the lawsuit against Penn State and Head Coach James Franklin, numerous former players and parents have come out in support of the coach. Franklin responded to the lawsuit at his press conference this afternoon.

This list will be updated as former players & Co. continue to support Head Coach James Franklin

Update: 9:15 AM, Wednesday, August 28th. Former HS Coach for OT Nana Asiedu, who ended his football career at PSU due to a heart condition last year, speaks up for Franklin.

Update: 11:30 AM, Wednesday, August 28th.

Former PSU RB, Saquon Barkley says in an interview with Matt Lombardo from NJ Advance Media that “I personally wanted to get back on the field as fast as I could…James Franklin was awesome for me. I tried to force it and he just wouldn’t allow me to force it.” The report goes on to say that Barkley can’t speak for everyone that has come thru Penn State, but “he never felt pressured to play hurt.”

Update: 12:120 PM, Wednesday, August 28th.

Former PSU DB, Jordan Miner retired due to heart problem last year. His father, Jordan Miner Sr. showed his support for Coach Franklin:

Update: 8:50 PM Wednesday, August 28th.

Former PSU QB, Trace McSorley has come out defending HC Franklin on Twitter saying, “I never once felt pressured to go back in the game by Coach Franklin.”

Update: 9:00 AM, Thursday, August 29th.

Former PSU TE, Adam Breneman speaks out in support of Coach Franklin.

Also, reported by PennLive, Former Penn State orthopedic team doctor, Dr. Lynch says more details of his lawsuit will come out in court.

Lair of the Lion: A History of Beaver Stadium (Keystone Books)
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