A former Penn State linebacker has returned to the Nittany Lions football program.

During his Monday spring practice press conference, James Franklin announced that Danny Rocco has joined the staff.

“I’m excited about when you get guys like Danny Rocco to be able to join our program, not only his experience in the NFL, his experience as a head coach, his experience as a coordinator, he’s also a letterman,” Franklin said.

Rocco played at PSU in 1979 and ’80 before continuing his career at Wake Forest. Rocco, 61, is a Huntington, Pennsylvania native. He has been in coaching since 1984, getting his start as a Wake Forest graduate assistant.

Rocco has experience as an assistant coach in the Power 5 and NFL as an assistant coach. He has been a head coach at Liberty (2006-11), Richmond (2012-16) and Delaware (2017-21). Delaware fired Rocco in December after a disappointing 2021 season in which the Fightin’ Blue Hens went 5-6. Rocco’s record at Delaware was 31-23 in 4 seasons. He has a 121-65 record as a head coach.