KSN Podcast: Talking Penn State uniforms, QB recruit Sean Clifford’s commitment, more

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July 20, 2015

Penn State has made headlines several times this week with the commitment of four-star quarterback Sean Clifford and the announcement that player names would be removed from uniforms. The jersey decision, which coach James Franklin made as a nod to the program’s tradition, ended a three-year era that former coach Bill O’Brien started prior to the 2012 season. Clifford represents the first verbal commitment in Penn State’s 2017 recruiting class….

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KSN Podcast: An interview with 2017 Penn State QB recruit Sean Clifford

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July 18, 2015

Penn State got on the board in the 2017 recruiting class this week with a verbal commitment from four-star quarterback Sean Clifford. The St. Xavier (Ohio) High School standout, who rates as the No. 157 player in the ’17 class by Rivals, was eager to commit after camping at Penn State in June and vowed to take on leadership responsibilities in the class. Clifford could go down as the most…

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KSN Podcast: An interview with Penn State great Troy Drayton

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July 17, 2015

Penn State announced this week that it would do away with player names on the backs of their uniforms, a decision made to honor a 125-year tradition in Happy Valley. The Nittany Lions’ jerseys were adorned with player names for three seasons from 2012-’14, in part, as a response to NCAA sanctions and as a gesture toward the players who stuck with the program. But the addition of player names,…

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KSN Podcast: Interview with Ohio State beat writer Doug Lesmerises

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July 14, 2015

Ohio State has a loaded roster back in 2015 with more experience and arguably better overall talent than the group that won the national championship last season. In a suddenly crowded Big Ten East division, the Buckeyes still reign supreme, and that fact is unlikely to change anytime soon. Some might say coach Urban Meyer has too much depth, at least in one area. Ohio State has three star quarterbacks…

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KSN Podcast: Interview with Big Ten Network analyst Gerry DiNardo

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July 12, 2015

Penn State is reloading quickly under coach James Franklin with a huge influx of talent in the 2015 recruiting class to go with valuable experience gained by a young roster in 2014. The Nittany Lions still have issues to resolve, notably along the offensive line, but depth and numbers are on the upswing after laboring through three seasons of NCAA sanctions. Big Ten Network analyst Gerry DiNardo has spent time…

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KSN Podcast: The best players Penn State will face in 2015, Nos. 11-16

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July 12, 2015

Penn State faces a steady stream of NFL talent in a 2015 schedule that might start with an early run of winnable matchups but inevitably gets into difficult matchups in a loaded Big Ten East division. Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State all have NFL-caliber talent up and down their roster, but perhaps none more so than Urban Meyer’s defending national champion Buckeyes. Among the list of 25 players on…

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KSN Podcast: Penn State recruits at The Opening, national title odds and more

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July 11, 2015

Penn State had a quartet of 2016 recruits in Beaverton, Ore., this week competing at The Opening, one of the nation’s most prestigious talent showcases. The group had plenty of positive moments, including notable performances at the event’s SPARQ combine testing. Miles Sanders turned in the best performance of the group, finishing 23rd in the field with a well-rounded effort. Shane Simmons checked in with the fastest 20-yard shuttle time…

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KSN Podcast: Previewing Penn State’s Lift for Life with Scott Shirley of Uplifting Athletes

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July 9, 2015

Penn State will put on a show for fans at its 14th annual Lift for Life event, which raises money and awareness for rare diseases through an entertaining display of the Nittany Lions’ strength exploits. The first Lift for Life took place on Penn State’s campus in 2002 and gave way to something bigger through Uplifting Athletes, which now has 24 chapters and big presence in the Big Ten and…

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KSN Podcast: Ranking the best players Penn State will face in 2015, Parts 1 and 2

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July 9, 2015

Penn State will face many individual challenges in its 2015 football schedule in a wide variety of opposing players, from stars to under-appreciated grinders and everything between. That goes for players inside and outside of the Big Ten, with lesser-known stars such as San Diego State’s Donnel Pumphrey and Temple’s Praise Martin-Oguike in the Lions’ future. Bob Flounders sorted through the top 25 players on Penn State’s schedule and ranked…

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KSN Podcast: Penn State recruiting updates, more news and notes

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July 6, 2015

Penn State has picked up a full head of steam on the recruiting trail with a class that ranks No. 6 nationally and is up to 15 verbal commitments. A run on defensive linemen has put the Nittany Lions back among the nation’s elite recruiting classes, highlighted by eight players ranked among the top 250 players in the country, according to 247 Sports. The recruitment of defensive tackles has been…

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KSN Podcast: Interview with 247 Sports director of recruiting Steve Wiltfong

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June 28, 2015

Penn State is one of the nation’s hottest programs on the recruiting trail with a run of four commitments in six days that pushed the 2016 class into the top 10 nationally in all four major recruiting services. Three of those four verbal commitments came from defensive tackles, which were timely additions at a big area of need beyond the 2015 season. James Franklin has wasted no time building three…

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KSN Podcast: Former Penn State players Yaacov Yisrael, Scott Shirley on the state of the program

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June 27, 2015

To say the Penn State football program has been through turbulence over the last four years would be a massive understatement. The Nittany Lions have been hammered with sanctions, played under two head coaches and two more interims and limped through several seasons of hefty roster restrictions. Through it all, Penn State has come out the other side under second-year coach James Franklin. The staff is recruiting at a high…

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KSN Podcast: Penn State recruiting updates, a look at Jim Haslett’s new role

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June 26, 2015

Penn State is on a big-time roll in its 2016 recruiting class with four new commitments in a span of six days. Punter Blake Gillkin and defensive tackles Christian Colon, Michael Dwumfour and Ellison Jordan all gave their verbal pledges this week, bringing the class total to 14. While Colon and Jordan committed late in the week — and after the podcast in this post was recorded — Gillikin and…

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KSN Podcast: Fan questions from Penn State’s James Franklin to impact freshmen and more

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June 22, 2015

The fan questions segment on the Keystone Kickoff Show focused largely on hot button issues at Penn State but also stuck with current events in asking about LeBron James’ likely position if he were to move from basketball to football. Bob Flounders and Andrew P. Shay talked about how to define success for James Franklin in his second season, which positions best lend themselves to early success for freshmen, where…

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KSN Podcast: Interview with FOXSports.com college football writer Bruce Feldman

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June 22, 2015

Few national college football writers produce the same timely, quality information as FOXSports.com’s Bruce Feldman. Penn State faithful have gotten glimpses of his deep connections in the college football community when Feldman broke news of James Franklin’s hiring and the push to retain defensive coordinator Bob Shoop last winter. Feldman has also intensely studied two key areas for the Penn State program, writing “The QB: The Making of Modern Quarterbacks,”…

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KSN Podcast: Evaluating Penn State’s incoming 2015 freshman class

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June 20, 2015

Penn State welcomes 22 freshmen to campus at the end of the month, a group that joins January enrollees Sterling Jenkins, Paris Palmer and Tommy Stevens. The crop of 2015 recruits is a key part of Penn State’s present and future as coach James Franklin finally pushes toward the NCAA scholarship limit of 85 after three years of sanctions. Because of an inherently flawed roster that is still both inexperienced…

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