Vanderbilt’s Franklin Set as Next Penn State Coach, Fox Says

Pennsylvania State University agreed to hire James Franklin as its next football coach, Fox Sports reported without saying where it got the information.

Franklin, 41, is 24-15 in three seasons at Vanderbilt University. A Pennsylvania native, he would be the first African-American head football coach in Penn State history.

Vanderbilt Athletic Director David Williams told the Associated Press today that Franklin remains the Commodores’ coach and that Franklin informed him he had not accepted another job offer.

If he goes to Penn State, Franklin would take over a Nittany Lions team that went 7-5 in its second season since the National Collegiate Athletic Association imposed punishments on the program including a $60 million fine and a four-year ban on postseason games in the aftermath of a child sex-abuse scandal that centered on former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky.

Bill O’Brien, Penn State’s coach for the past two seasons, left this month to take the same job with the National Football League’s Houston Texans.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eben Novy-Williams in New York at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at

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