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Penn State Nittany Lions

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PSU Players Talk Franklin's First Days

Updated: Thursday, January 16 2014, 02:15 AM EST

By Matt Maisel

UNIVERSITY PARK -- Penn State football players spoke on camera for the first time since James Franklin was hired last weekend. Freshman quarterback Christian Hackenberg said he had a positive closed-door meeting with Franklin earlier in the week while sophomore cornerback Jordan Lucas said returning players will need to work with incoming, new assistant coaches to help gain chemistry.

All players we spoke to supported former defensive line coach Larry Johnson's decision to leave the program after 18 years. Johnson was hired by Ohio State on Wednesday.

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Larry Johnson, who spent the past 18 years as an assistant at Penn State, is joining Ohio State's staff as an assistant head coach and defensive line coach.

Johnson was Penn State's interim coach before James Franklin was hired for the top job on Saturday. Johnson replaces three-year Buckeyes assistant Mike Vrabel, who left his alma mater to work for former Nittany Lions coach Bill O'Brien with the Houston Texans.

Seven of Johnson's Penn State defensive linemen were first-round NFL draft picks.

Ohio State still must replace co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach Everett Withers, who took the head coaching job at James Madison.

PSU Players Talk Franklin's First Days


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