ATLANTIC CITY — Since Penn State might not play in a bowl game the next three years, Bill O’Brien wants to schedule a game in Ireland.
The head coach said Friday that he is making an “aggressive” push to schedule a game in Ireland during the remaining three sanction years. Several issues need to be addressed first, including the Big Ten’s future schedules.
When Rutgers and Maryland enter the Big Ten, the conference likely will expand to nine, or possibly 10, league games. Finding an opponent willing to travel is an issue as well. Notre Dame played Navy in Dublin last year.
“I always get in trouble with my bosses on this, but it’s fun to talk about,” O’Brien said. “… We’re definitely exploring it and trying to be aggressive about it.”
“FRESH IDEAS:” O’Brien said he made changes to the football team’s medical staff to bring “fresh ideas” to the program.
Penn State announced Wednesday that Dr. Wayne Sebastianelli no longer will serve as the football team’s physician. He will remain as Penn State’s director of athletic medicine.
“What’s hard for people at Penn State, from the outside looking in, is that it’s been the same way for a number of years,” O’Brien said. “It’s more about a fresh approach, fresh ideas and doing what’s best for the student-athletes.”
O’Brien also called Fran Ganter, who retired Thursday after 42 years as a Penn State coach and administrator, “instrumental” in helping him make the transition to head coach.
“He was very helpful to me, and he’ll be a friend for the rest of my time here at Penn State,” O’Brien said.
PRO DAY UPDATE: Penn State will hold its annual Pro Day for NFL scouts March 11. Among those hoping to make an impact is quarterback Matt McGloin, who was not invited to the NFL Combine.
McGloin said he expects to perform well in the running drills and expects to impress scouts as a passer. He trained in California over the winter.
“I know one of the things people say is that I lack arm strength,” McGloin said. “But I have no problem driving the ball downfield and throwing good routes, so hopefully I can shock some people.”
NOTEWORTHY: O’Brien said running back Akeel Lynch being charged this week with criminal mischief wasn’t a big issue. “I believe he was wrestling around and his foot went through a window,” O’Brien said. “It’s something he shouldn’t have been doing, but I certainly don’t think it’s a felony.” A preliminary hearing is scheduled for March. … O’Brien’s busy schedule continues: He will be in Orlando today for a coaching clinic, then will speak at the Lehigh Valley Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame Scholar Athlete banquet on Sunday in Northampton. … Penn State is planning another Coaches Caravan this spring. A Lehigh Valley stop is scheduled for May 7.
(c)2013 The Morning Call (Allentown, Pa.)
Visit The Morning Call (Allentown, Pa.) at www.mcall.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services