Entering his seventh (!) season at Penn State Nittany Lions, James Franklin is no stranger to coaching turnover. In fact, in the last five seasons, the only coach in the country who has hired more assistants is Nick Saban. This statistic is completely made up, but it feels right, doesn't it? Both coaches have had extremely successful assistants move on to high profile jobs, and they've both had THE SAME assistant who is now at Michigan.
2020 brings some new coaches to the Lions' sideline, as every year does. There are also some very familiar faces, maybe going for one more ride before the opportunity of a lifetime opens up. Let's dive in.
Former OC Ricky Rahne - After two moderately successful seasons, Rahne landed a head coaching gig at Old Dominion. He takes former five star RB recruit Ricky Slade with him, as well as former Penn State assistant S&C coach Dwight Galt IV. Go win the C-USA, gentlemen.
New OC Kirk Ciarrocca - Coming from the OC position at Minnesota, Ciarrocca has been PJ Fleck's OC since 2013. I'm legitimately excited about this hire, I think Ciarrocca will excel for 2-4 years before getting his own head coaching opportunity.
Former WR Coach Gerad Parker - After one year on the job, Parker has been hired away by West Virginia to be their new OC.
New WR Coach Taylor Stubblefield - A remarkable WR in his playing days, Stubblefield led the Joe Tiller era Purdue Boilermakers in receptions each year from 01-04. He is the B1G record-holder in career receptions, and is top ten all time for FBS/Div 1A. Since 2007, Stubblefield has bounced around a lot, but has steadily worked his way to higher profile gigs as WR coach. He is now the fourth PSU WR coach in four years. Can we get a touch of consistency here?
Former OL Coach Matt Limegrover - Released from his contract after Penn State's Cotton Bowl win, Limegrover stayed in the B1G East, giving Michigan trade secrets on HYPE.
New OL Coach Phil Trautwein - An All-SEC Left Tackle for Urban Meyer's 2008 National Champion Florida Gators, Trautwein is no stranger to high level football. His coaching career is young, but certainly moving in the right direction. Five of his seven years on the sidelines has been spent at Boston College, the last two being as OL coach. 2019 saw four of BC's five Offensive Linemen being named All-ACC, with the fifth an honorable mention. This is it, folks. This is the year Penn State's OL is a strength. Please don't refer to this prediction if I'm wrong yet again.
While much less turnover than the offense, the change on the defensive side will be felt.
Former DL Coach Sean Spencer - The Wild Dogs' pack leader has cashed in his incredible success at Penn State by making the jump to the NFL. He will now be eating the souls of NFC East opponents as the DL coach for the New York Giants. Good luck, Coach Chaos!
New DL Coach John Scott, Jr. - Scott is an old hand at coaching defense. Entering his 20th season coaching, he comes to us from the SEC, spending last year at South Carolina and the two prior at Arkansas.
And The Rest
Deion Barnes, Wendy Laurent, and Jeff Carpenter are all former Nittany Lions turned Graduate Assistants. They are joined by V'Angelo Bentley (Illinois Fighting Illini 2012-15). Look for these young men wearing brightly colored hats before finding their own opportunities.