Drew Allar, Future Penn State QB, Tabbed SI's Freak of the Week
SI99 QB recruit lighting it up as a senior amid playoff run, not concerned about James Franklin's future"Freak" is a term thrown around too much in the sports world, but sometimes, it's the first phrase that crowds the cranium when a gaudy athletic feat takes place.
Neither USC nor LSU will be swooping in to acquire Penn State Nittany Lions head coach James Franklin anytime soon. © Matthew OHaren-USA TODAY Sports James Franklin's new deal keeps with Penn State through 2031.
Amid rumors Franklin was close to signing a long-term deal with the university, Penn State confirmed Tuesday he has put pen to paper on a new 10-year contract that keeps him linked with the program through 2031. The Athletic's Chris Vannini tweeted details about that agreement:
"Penn State's future is bright, and I'm honored to continue to serve as your head football coach," Franklin said for the released statement. "Nine weeks ago, the administration approached me about making a long-term investment in our football program. This prompted numerous conversations outlining the resources needed to be competitive at a level that matches the expectations and history of Penn State. What's most evident from those conversations is the importance of our student-athletes' success both on and off the field."
In total, Franklin holds a record of 67-32 across his Penn State tenure that began in 2014. He guided the Nittany Lions to the 2016 Big Ten Championship and is set to make his seventh bowl appearance with the school.
Penn State is 7-4 this season.
"We are excited to have James Franklin lead our football program for a long time," Penn State athletic director Sandy Barbour added for the statement. "We will continue our collective efforts to constantly improve in all aspects of our program. We have made, and will need to continue to make, significant investment in our football program because we believe we have a very bright future under James. With this contract, we are signaling our sustained commitment to being one of the premiere programs in the history of college football. Our goals and aspirations relating to football have never wavered and our investments today and in the future of our program will allow us to compete at the highest level."
Jim Harbaugh had serious wardrobe malfunction during Penn State game
Jim Harbaugh was so focused on leading his team to a win against Penn State on Saturday that he didn’t even notice his leg was on fire. © Matthew OHaren-USA TODAY Sports Michigan Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh Harbaugh had a frightening wardrobe malfunction during Michigan’s 21-17 win over the Nittany Lions. He got too close to a space heater on the sideline, and the heater melted a big hole in his pants. Fortunately, Harbaugh was wearing multiple layers. Jim Harbaugh's pants got burned by the space heater on the sidelines in the 1st half pic.twitter.
Franklin has often been mentioned as a favorite to land the USC job, but Jon Sauber of the Centre Daily Times notes the coach said at a State College Quarterback Club lunch last week he was "not going anywhere."
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Related slideshow: The 25 best rivalries in college football (Provided by Yardbarker)
The 25 best rivalries in college football
Perhaps the best part of each college football season is the collection of rivalries that feature rabid fans, packed stadiums and hot tempers on the field. Starting toward the end of November, it's all about the rivalries — with cool trophies and funny names.Here's our ranking of the top 25 college football rivalries currently and ones we'd like to see start up again.
25. Indiana vs. Purdue
These schools play for the famed Old Oaken Bucket each season. Though neither program has been in contention for a Big Ten title in recent years, it's still one of the most storied and respected rivalries in all of sports. The Hoosiers and Boilermakers first met in 1891. Purdue holds a significant lead in the series (74-41-6) and has won the last two meetings.
24. DePauw vs. Wabash
We're going to stay in the state of Indiana but drop down to Division III. Each year DePauw's Tigers face Wabash's Little Giants with the Monon Bell on the line. The 300-pound locomotive bell has gone to the victor of each game since 1932, though these schools first met in 1890. Wabash holds a slight edge in the series, thanks to victories in nine of the last 10 meetings.
23. Lafayette vs. Lehigh
Simply known as "The Rivalry," these FCS schools, located less than 20 miles apart in Pennsylvania's Lehigh Valley, started taking on each other in 1884, thus, reportedly, making it the most played matchup between schools in all of college football. Though Lafayette leads the series 78-71-5, Lehigh has won four in a row and nine of the last 11 get-togethers.
21. Minnesota vs. Wisconsin
It's always a spirited contest when Paul Bunyan's Axe is on the line. However, we have a feeling things could get ratcheted up for the 2019 installment, at least from the Wisconsin side. The Badgers' 14-game winning streak in the rivalry ended last season when P.J. Fleck's Gophers rowed the boat into Madison and shipped out with a decisive 37-15 victory to get their hands on the Axe for the first time since 2003.
20. Clemson vs. South Carolina
Obviously a big deal to the good folks of South Carolina, this rivalry has been rather streaky since the 2009 season. That year, the Gamecocks won what would be the first of five straight over the Tigers. However, Clemson has returned the favor by winning five in a row — and the last three by a combined 146-52.
19. Oklahoma vs. Oklahoma State
Who doesn't love them some Bedlam. Fans of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State football certainly do. This series has some great history that includes players diving into a creek to recover the ball, the mafia fixing games and plenty of high-scoring shootouts. About the only thing that has dampened this series is Oklahoma's dominance (88-18-7). The Sooners have won four in a row and 14 of the last 16 matchups.
18. BYU vs. Utah
This is dubbed the "Holy War," in reference to both school's having several members who are part of the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The teams even met in the 2015 Las Vegas Bowl, which became known as the "Holy War in Sin City." Utah leads the series 61-34-4 and has won the last eight meetings.
17. Michigan vs. Michigan State
Remember Mike Hart's "little brother" comment regarding Michigan State from a few years back? It's still kind of true, considering Michigan leads the series 70-36-15. After the Spartans won three straight from 2013-15, the Wolverines claimed two of the last three meetings and will host this year's version in Ann Arbor.
15. Washington vs. Washington State
The Apple Cup might be the best rivalry on the West Coast from the standpoint that both schools are among the best in the Pac-12. Of course, Washington has had its way in recent years during a rivalry that began in 1900. The Huskies have won six in a row by an average margin of almost 22 points. Still, the history and longevity of this series makes it pretty special.
14. USC vs. UCLA
One day, the battle for Los Angeles is going to mean something again. We just don't know when because both teams are far from national championship contenders, and even earning a bowl bid has been a chore of late. USC had won three straight in the series until UCLA scored 13 unanswered fourth-quarter points to win 34-27 last season in a game that was actually quite entertaining.
13. Texas vs. Texas A&M
It's too bad this rivalry has been put on hiatus since 2011 due to the Aggies leaving the Big 12 for the SEC. Reportedly, there has been talk of trying to revive the rivalry starting early in the next decade, but thus far nothing has been agreed upon. Prior to the series being halted, the Longhorns had won three of four and lead 76-37-5 all time.
12. Pittsburgh vs. West Virginia
Bad news first: The "Backyard Brawl" between Pitt and West Virginia has not been played since 2011 when the Mountaineers won their third straight in the series. Here's the good news: The rivalry will start up again in 2022. OK, that's still a ways to wait, but we know it's coming and it will be wild, heated and fun for more than just the fan bases of both schools. Pitt leads 61-40-3 over West Virginia.
11. Florida vs. Florida State
Since 2001, the Gators and Seminoles have split their 18 meetings. Now that's a rivalry. Of course, it wasn't like the teams were alternating victories. Florida won six in a row from 2004-09, and Florida State took five straight before the Gators ended the fun — and the Seminoles' lengthy bowl run — with last year's 41-14 rout at Gainesville. At the moment, it's about the Gators, but FSU should be hungry.
9. Harvard vs. Yale
"The Game" has been going strong since 1875. It's the one day of the school year when academics truly don't come first at these hallowed Ivy League institutions. The game day traditions at both schools are as much a part of the season-finale contest as the on-field matchup itself. While Yale owns a 67-60-8 advantage in the all-time series, Harvard has won 15 of the last 18.
8. Notre Dame vs. USC
This rivalry is more about history than anything else, especially since the last five matchups have not been all that close — though SC did lead 10-0 in last year's meeting before losing 24-17. These are still two of the most storied programs that make it a point to play each other every year and treat the rivalry with respect — the way it ought to be.
7. Florida State vs. Miami
One reason this rivalry ranks high on our list is because for years the caliber of star players on the field at the same time was like a future Pro Bowl. From the various "wide right" — or "left — to Miami's impressive 2018 comeback from 27-7 down, the Seminoles and Hurricanes continue to thrill. Miami holds a slight edge in the all-time series.
6. Mississippi vs. Mississippi State
The rivalry game known as the Egg Bowl was first played in 1901 and is one of the longest uninterrupted such contests in college football history. Neither team is keen on the other, and that includes players, coaches, fans, anybody. It's also a Thanksgiving week — or weekend — staple. The Rebels lead the all-time series 62-45-6, but it has been relatively close with Mississippi State holding a 12-11 advantage beginning with the 1996 season.
5. Georgia vs. Florida
With Jacksonville, Florida, as the setting, one of the best scenes in all of college football happens when the Bulldogs and Gators meet each season. Though the name is no longer officially used, the "World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party" is the perfect description for the atmosphere and experience that is a Georgia-Florida football game. On the field Georgia has won the last two meetings after Florida dominated for years. However, with both teams expected to challenge for the SEC East Division title, this year's installment should be something special.
4. Alabama vs. Auburn
It's simple: Nobody on either side of the Iron Bowl rivalry likes anybody associated with the other. The heated nature of this series has gone behind the football field and shown just how misguided sports fans, in general, can be and to what lengths they will go to support their teams. The schools have met 85 times on the field with Alabama leading the series 47 to 37 with one tie.
3. Oklahoma vs. Texas
The atmosphere at the Cotton Bowl during the Texas State Fair in October is the perfect backdrop for the Red River Showdown. It's even better when both teams are good. That's been the case the last two years and should be again in 2019. Last season was extra special with these rivals also meeting in the Big 12 championship game. Let's hope we get a repeat in 2019.
2. Michigan vs. Ohio State
This is another rivalry where the teams and their respective fans just don't like each other. While it's not quite as heated as, say, the Iron Bowl, it's still that one game each team is expected to win. Of late, it's all Ohio State, winner of seven in a row and 14 of 15. Last season was slated to be the year Michigan showed up and ended its series slide. Instead, Jim Harbaugh's guys were blasted 62-39 by the Buckeyes. The Wolverines should not be taken seriously until they are able to beat Ohio State again.
1. Army vs. Navy
It's perhaps the one rivalry where records truly don't matter and respect is abound. The pageantry, emotion and tradition displayed annually between these service academies are always something to be seen. Navy leads the series 60-52-7, but Army has won the last three meetings by a combined 12 points. Then again, after watching the effort put forth by both teams, it's easy to see why this rivalry is about more than just football.
76ers deny report about Ben Simmons ghosting them .
It’s hard to know who is telling the truth. Obviously, the 76ers want to cover up any dysfunction that might exist. They need rival teams to think their relationship with Simmons is just fine and that they are content to keep him.During a podcast interview with Steve Lipman and Dan Volpone of Liberty Ballers, Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer shared some interesting information about the relationship between Simmons and the 76ers. Fischer said the team hasn’t been able to get in touch with Simmons this offseason and that the two sides have never really been on the same page.