James Franklin responds to rumors about USC vacancy
With the USC job now open, James Franklin’s name has popped up as a strong candidate to be the next head coach of the Trojans. The Penn State leader isn’t really worried about it right now, though.
During his weekly press conference, Franklin was asked about his name surfacing as a candidate for the job in Los Angeles. For now, his primary concern is Auburn.
“As you guys know, I can’t stand any form of distraction. So, I’ll discuss this today with the leadership council so that we can make sure all of our energy is on our preparation for Auburn,” Franklin said. “So, that’s how we’ll handle it.”
— David Malandra Jr (@DaveMReports) September 14, 2021
Franklin’s name has frequently surfaced for jobs at USC (even when not available), Florida State and Texas A&M during coaching searches. Nothing has lured him away from State College.
Yahoo’s Pete Thamel reported on Monday, just hours after USC announced the firing of Clay Helton, that Franklin was one of the top candidates for the job. Other potential B1G coaches who could be in the mix included P.J. Fleck (Minnesota) and Greg Schiano (Rutgers).
Franklin has been at Penn State since 2014 and is a Pennsylvania native. During his time with the Nittany Lions, Franklin has posted a 62-28 record with three 11-win seasons and a B1G title in 2016.
Penn State is off to a 2-0 start this season, defeating Wisconsin and Ball State.