Penn State fans seem to be happy with their new head coach James Franklin, but there is sure to be some lingering resentment for the way former coach Bill O’Brien left the program. O’Brien expressed frustration with the “Paterno People”, supporters of Joe Paterno who O’Brien didn’t feel gave the necessary support to the program and the direction it was heading in.
Today, while on ESPN Radio’s “Mike and Mike”, O’Brien walked many of those sentiments back, stating that he had plenty of support at Penn State, and apologized for the “Paterno People” rant:
“I felt like I had a ton of support at Penn State. My staff had a ton of support at Penn State, and I regret that, that conversation even took place. I regret that… I felt very good about the support I had there and I apologize who took that conversation obviously the wrong way.”
O’Brien was also enthusiastic about the future of Penn State football:
“I think Penn State is in a better spot now than it was two years ago. I think my staff, myself, our players are very proud of that. I feel like Penn State is a place where you can win national championships and Big Ten championships.”
While O’Brien’s college days are behind him, it is good that he took the time to apologize and try to make things right with the Penn State fanbase. His performance as head coach was key in keeping that program afloat, and it would be unfortunate if that accomplishment was forgotten due to discontent on either side.