Bill O’Brien was named head football coach at Penn State over the weekend.
If you want to say Bill Who you are not alone. The offensive coordinator with New England isn’t exactly a household name. And get this: he has no ties to Penn State.
If you listen to many Penn State fans, you would have thought the Lions committed the unpardonable sin. How dare Penn State not hire somebody from the family?
Well, folks the family is broken and it’s time to get some outside help. I thought maybe the Lions would clean house, but they are retaining assistant Larry Johnson.
Due to probably the most terrible scandal in collegiate sports, many coaches would not touch the Penn State job. The Penn State football job is not the coveted one of yesteryear. In a perfect world, Penn State wanted to name a high profile coach. But as we have learned in recent weeks and months, Penn State is far from the perfect world.
O’Brien inherits a real mess. This is an extremely tough job. It will take healing and lots of patience. One advantage O’Brien has is he is following a soiled legend. Joe Paterno’s handling or lack of handling regarding the scandal put a major black mark on Paterno’s legend. Few fans will talk about following a legend now but rather than the difficult of putting this program back together.
So Penn State fans, give O’Brien a chance. Give him time to embrace your school. He has a bigger job than concentrating on wins and losses. He is in charge of healing and this healing process won’t be easy.