It's breaking across several outlets, but Penn State coach Bill O'Brien, the B1G Coach of the Year, reportedly went job hunting earlier this week:
Breaking: The #Browns interviewed Penn State coach Bill O'Brien this week, a source told the Plain Dealer today.— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) January 3, 2013
From my Twitter line of OSU folks and Penn State folks, I come away with two distinct vibes:
Cleveland fans: NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!
Penn State fans: It's bullshit, he ain't leaving. Right? Really? Nahhhhh....NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!
The thing with social media is that a lot of stuff gets prematurely reported these days, but Mary Kay Cabot is the Browns beat reporter for the Cleveland Plain Dealer, so this seems pretty legit. But note that this was only an interview, not a job offer, nor a job acceptance. That said, the mothership is reporting from multiple sources that he's leaving.
Bill O'Brien said last year that he eventually wanted to be an NFL head coach, and he accepted the Penn State job before the NCAA sanctions came down on the program. O'Brien did a great job his first year, all things considered, and if he were to bolt for the NFL after a pit stop in Happy Valley, it would throw the Penn State program into more chaos.
When all the chaos was floating around the program before BOB got hired last year, Penn State recruits were raided by a couple programs, most notably Urban Meyer at Ohio State. With 4 more years of a bowl ban and scholarship reductions, this couldn't come at a worse time for the Nittany Lions.
But this might be the best chance for O'Brien to jump to the NFL. His stock is about as high as it will get at PSU--8 wins and coach of the year is close to the highwater mark for the program over the next four years. If he's going to go to the NFL, he might not have a better chance for a few years...or ever if PSU drops into oblivion.
99% of me wants BOB to stay at PSU, because the team and the University have been through enough for awhile. But the 1% of me would love to watch the meltdown and the massive amounts of message board trolling, because you gotta admit, it would be epic.