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Saturday, March 9, 2013

Bill O'Brien, A Mastermind Both On & Off The Field!



     In what seemed like a certain date with destiny for Penn State football program and doomsday, after the brutal (and very questionable) sanctions, it was going to take a miracle for Penn State to stop the bleeding anytime soon. Right off the back Penn State lost its first two games of the 2012 season and it appeared that only darker days seemed to be ahead. Bill O'Brien though was not going to allow that to happen, especially on his watch! Penn State would go on to win 8 out of its last 10 games to finish with an overall record of 8-4 and a 5-3 record in the Big Ten Conference. By all accounts, Bill O'Brien met,and exceeded expectations. O'Brien's success has not only come on the football field itsself, but what he has done off it is just as remarkable!

     Penn State's 2013 recruiting class was ranked 43rd by Rivals.com, 24th by ESPN, and 23rd by 247sports.com.  Either way you look at it, the fact is that Bill O'Brien and Penn State were still able assemble a very respectful recruiting class, not to mention they did so with only 17 LOI's,(letter of intent) instead of the usual 25. But perhaps even more impressive was O'Brien getting two of the most highly touted recruits in Quaterback Christian Hackenberg and Tight End Adam Breneman, both whom look to be a great fit in Bill O'Brien's offensive system!

     O'Brien's off the field success doesn't end there though. O'Brien has attracted high school recruits to come to Penn State as walk-ons, or as O'Brien has labeled them "Run-ons" due to the lack of scholarships they have to offer. In fact, it maybe more impressive than the actual recruiting class of 17 commitments itself as he managed to match that total of "Run Ons" (Walk Ons). While walk-ons are usually brought on to teams for depth, O'Brien managed to persuade some high school football stars who had actually received scholarships and interest from other top schools to come to Penn State on a try-out basis.

     Despite being limited to scholarships, O'Brien has already received three pledges(all 3 star recruits according to Scout.com) for the 2014 class. While Penn State may be a couple years away from becoming a powerhouse once again, It will be interesting to see the kind of recruits O'Brien will be able to obtain during and after the sanctions are over and if his success on the field can continue as well!

     If there are still any doubts of what O'Brien is capable of, just remember, this is a guy who coached Tom Brady and incorporated an effective offensive system in New England and has now brought it over to Penn State with him. If that is not enough, consider this, Matt McGloin broke nine school records, and tying another while amassing some of the best numbers ever produced by a Penn State Quarterback in a single season, finishing the 2012 season with; 3,266 yards, 24 touchdowns and only five interceptions.(McGloin also had 5 Rushing TD's)


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