Coach Franklin Prepares

chas
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Aug 13, 2017 8:55 pm

Coach Franklin Prepares

Postby chas » Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:57 am

Coach Franklin enters his office and sits behind his desk. It will be a working lunch, too much on the schedule to do otherwise. Before he hits the speaker button on the phone he takes a breath and leans back in his chair.

“BLT, lemon orzo soup, those crisp kettle cooked chips, the garlic dill pickle and the tall sweet iced tea. It’s a good day…

The kids are looking good. They are bought into the plan we have the coaches spelling out to them. We have had a great off season, they are relatively free of nagging injuries, and the competition for playing time has everyone focused. So good to have every position two or three people deep. Very different than when we got here.

Still, I have issues to deal with. The team is good, but not as good as the press and fans think.

The defense brings challenges. My front seven is good, but not great. Do we have anyone there who can take over the game when we need it? Someone who can produce the sack or turnover by the force of his presence? Not yet we don’t. That cost us the Rose Bowl. All we needed in those last few minutes was one sack, but it was nowhere to be found.

The secondary is full of good kids, but other than Marcus nobody that the opponent has to game plan. We have to find someone we can count on to make a play, no matter what the situation. Reid might have been that guy.

Special teams? We are still looking for the big play from the punt return and kick return teams. Do we have that in Hamler, or Sanders, or Polk, or anyone? I also need someone to step up and take over the kickoff duties. One thing, I have the athletes to populate both units. Again, not a luxury we had when we got here.

Joe is acting like he has something to prove with his offense. I like that. Having a chip in your shoulder is good for the staff and the players. Too many nice things to read about what they have done in the past. Press clippings won’t win us any games, and they motivate the opponent.

The offensive line has to prove they can be as good as we think they can be. We have young kids with experience, but no experience in working as the same five man unit we will put out on the field at the start of the season. Will all the pieces fit together and work as we hope? What do they say in the military? “No plan survives first contact with the enemy.” The only way we get better on third down, and we have to get better on third down, is if we have an offensive line that forces its will on our opponents. Until we have that, we will have Saquon sacrificing 20 percent of his touches to no gains or losses. Can't continue to have that happen.

One thing is certain, if we are going to be special this year we have to be productive in the first half. It will help the defense to catch a break and not be on the field so long. That is a concern for me. If the offense does not hand the ball over so much it will help to hide the flaws we have on the defense and give us time to develop the people who we will look to for leadership in the second half of the season.

OK, so let’s look at this list of things to do. Call these coaches, speak to these donors, give Sandy my thoughts on these matters, complete my outlines for the staff meetings, deal with the issues this kid has with his parents… Oh, and Akron, Akron, Akron.

PittGradPSUMad
Posts: 64
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:47 pm

Re: Coach Franklin Prepares

Postby PittGradPSUMad » Mon Aug 14, 2017 12:20 pm

chas wrote:Still, I have issues to deal with. The team is good, but not as good as the press and fans think.


And there lies the bane of all coaches: expectations. Last year at this time, most of us were in agreement that a 7-5 season was likely and acceptable, 6-6 was more likely but tolerable, anything less would mean Franklin's head on a platter. After the Michigan debacle, many of us would have volunteered to deliver that platter personally to the Lasch Building. Happily, we ended the season ecstatic at 11-3 except for the blemish left by USC's freshman wunderkind QB who will likely be in the early Heisman discussions to come. So, what can we expect for the upcoming season? I'm not ready to declare myself enamored of GF's coaching genius just yet, and I'm still unable to arrive at a reasonable guess as to the season's outcome. My gut tells me last year was a surprising anomaly with talent, timing and opportunity combining to surprise our opponents......and us. This season, opposing coaches will have a better idea of who we are and will prepare accordingly. Thus, my expectations are sufficiently tempered to avoid thinking we will equal or surpass last year's record. A 9-5 finish would be okay, a 10-4 finish would be nice. Anything above and beyond would be fantastic. But look out for 8-6.
Yeah, well, that's like your opinion, man.

PittGradPSUMad
Posts: 64
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:47 pm

Re: Coach Franklin Prepares

Postby PittGradPSUMad » Mon Aug 14, 2017 12:29 pm

This should go under under the Recruiting forum, but I can't figure out how to do that on this new board. The Harrisburg Patriot News wrote a blurb about Micah Parsons which included a tweet from a fan asking how many likes it would take for him to recommit to Penn State. Parsons reply?....50K. That speaks volumes and reinforces my opinion that Micah Parsons inhabits the same recruiting world as did Terrell Pryor. Yes, he possesses monstrous talent but he also seems to possess a monstrous ego. Let him be someone else's problem.
Yeah, well, that's like your opinion, man.

Blue&White
Posts: 238
Joined: Sat Aug 12, 2017 10:01 am

Re: Coach Franklin Prepares

Postby Blue&White » Mon Aug 14, 2017 12:41 pm

We don't have a recruiting forum. Just start a thread on recruiting.

As for expectations, I expect a perfect season and a National Championship. Anything less is a major disappointment and the team will have wasted my time.

Shane
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Aug 13, 2017 7:07 pm
Location: Curwensville, Pa

Re: Coach Franklin Prepares

Postby Shane » Mon Aug 14, 2017 3:12 pm

Love seeing Chas post this, always one of my favorites.

As far as the season goes, I think we have a much tougher schedule this year. At Iowa, Northwestern and Ohio St and get the Wolverines at home. Come out of those games 4-0 and we are going to the playoff. Come out 3-1 and we will be in the discussion, but will fall short of the playoff goal. 2-2 isn't unreasonable, but I would think most fans would be upset with this result. We do have a lot of questions on defense that I'm not sure will be answered until we are a month or so in to the season.

Shore Lion
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2017 3:31 pm

Re: Coach Franklin Prepares

Postby Shore Lion » Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:05 pm

The schedule is tough (but really, just about everybody's is to some extent with 9 BIG games). 2 of the first 3 don't scare me much. Pitt doesn't have the team they did last year and I just don't see them scoring like they did last year. The first real test is Iowa but I think this team doesn't match up well for Iowa. As long as PSU takes care of the ball I think that game is not as close as some think. Everyone is talking about Northwestern as a trap game but I don't see it. They beat PSU last time they played and these guys remember that. I don't see the slow start that we're accustomed to with those 11 am Midwest games. Of course, I didn't expect it with Indiana and Purdue last year either but they turned out OK.
Last edited by Shore Lion on Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:19 am, edited 1 time in total.

Underlion
Posts: 58
Joined: Sun Aug 13, 2017 3:02 pm

Re: Coach Franklin Prepares

Postby Underlion » Tue Aug 15, 2017 8:46 pm

If this team can play over their heads with the mental toughness of the prior 4-5 they will have 0 or 1 loss going into the playoffs. How many programs have gotten more from less? Hard to continue to play over our heads but if we do.... :D

sameoldlama
Posts: 38
Joined: Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:43 am

Re: Coach Franklin Prepares

Postby sameoldlama » Thu Aug 17, 2017 10:12 am

CJF has proved he can recruit - he did it under difficult circumstances and I believe it will only get better if PSU can sustain success. I think he also has shown he can make the necessary staff changes when the team may not be developing talent or meeting expectations. The Moorhead hire sure looks like a home run.
This year I think we get a taste of the staff's ability to develop talent and prep a team with a good level of talent and ability to put together a strong season.

Many factors can play into the success of a season, schedule, injuries, catching a good team on an up or down weekend but in my estimation this team has the ability to challenge for the division title and B1? title and possibly a playoff spot.

This is the most anticipation I've had entering a season in probably 10 years.

We Are...2
Posts: 47
Joined: Tue Aug 29, 2017 10:00 am
Location: York, PA

Re: Coach Franklin Prepares

Postby We Are...2 » Tue Aug 29, 2017 12:27 pm

sameoldlama wrote:
This is the most anticipation I've had entering a season in probably 10 years.


I echo this thought 100%. It's going to be a H... of a ride, seat-belts on and chairs in their upright position!
What the H... was that? Oh, Barkley!

Shore Lion
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue Aug 15, 2017 3:31 pm

Re: Coach Franklin Prepares

Postby Shore Lion » Thu Aug 31, 2017 2:33 pm

Since this thread was about Coach Franklin I thought I'd post this link https://www.theplayerstribune.com/james-franklin-penn-state-roaring-back/. It's a really good story about him and how he's gotten to this point and why he does what he does. Take a few minutes and read this. I'd love to hear what others think about it.