Franklin says focused on Auburn not USC rumors

Penn State coach gives thoughts on new offensive coordinator
Penn State head coach James Franklin at podium
Photo credit Robert Goddin-USA TODAY Sports

PITTSBURGH (93.7 The Fan) – It’s happened a couple of times, this one in-season. It seemed immediately after USC fired head coach Clay Helton, James Franklin’s name came up as a replacement.

This speculation happened a couple of years ago as the Trojans ended up sticking with Helton.

“I can’t stand any form of distraction,” Franklin said Tuesday.  I’ll discuss it with the leadership council so that we can make sure all of our energy is on our preparation for Auburn.  That’s how we will handle it.  We will talk to the leadership council today about it.”

Offensive report card

Penn State wanted to be more dynamic on offense, hence replacing offensive coordinator Kirk Ciarrocca in January with Mike Yurcich.  A California University (PA) graduate and former offensive coordinator at Edinboro.  He was also the offensive coordinator for the high-scoring offenses under Mason Rudolph at Oklahoma State.

Nittany Lions, 2-0, scored 16 points in a win at Wisconsin and 43 beating Ball State.  QB Sean Clifford has 548 total yards and three touchdowns.  Penn State also has yet to turn it over.

“I think we're always going to be striving for more,” Franklin said.  “But I think we've shown flashes. I think we can be more consistent there.  I think we can be more explosive.  There are also some plays that we have missed, whether it's missed a read or overthrew a ball a little bit or maybe a different call.”

“It's a combination of factors of execution. It's all of it. But I think for where we are in the season, if we just continue to get better and continue to take strides in really every area, running the ball, protection, explosive plays, I think we'll like where we are.”

Franklin said they are excited about the opportunity to show where they are hosting Auburn on Saturday night for a White Out at Beaver Stadium.