Accolades follow Nittany Lions after upset win
Penn State’s 24-21 upset of No. 2 Ohio State on Saturday led to several players being honored by the Big Ten Conference.
Linebacker Brandon Bell was named the league’s Defensive Player of the Week after recording a career-high 18 tackles. He returned from an injury, as did linebacker Jason Cabinda, to lead a defensive effort that held Ohio State to 21 points, 28 below its season average.
Marcus Allen and Grant Haley shared the Special Teams Player of the Week honor after their game-changing play that decided the contest. Allen leaped at the line of scrimmage to block a field goal, and Haley scooped up the ball and returned it 60 yards for the decisive TD with 4 ½ minutes to play.
Penn State was named the national team of the week by the Football Writers Association of America.
Coachingsearch.com names the top assistant coaches around the country each week, and PSU had two selected: defensive line coach Sean Spencer and special teams coordinator Charles Huff. Brent Pry did not receive the nod for defensive coordinator, which went to SMU’s Van Malone following a win over Houston.
Pro Football Focus grades players at all positions throughout college football each week, and it gave PSU right tackle Brendan Mahon the top overall grade for any position during the game. Center Brian Gaia also received a stellar grade.
James Franklin will attend a family funeral today, so his weekly news conference has been pushed back to Wednesday.
Franklin got emotional after Saturday’s game talking about the death of his brother-in-law and the impact on his niece and nephew.
“I also want to give a shout out to my niece and nephew, Jeremy and Kendra, who lost their father on Tuesday night,” Franklin said after the game. “So it was an emotional night for my family, an emotional week for my family, and although this win was big, I want Jeremy and Kendra to know that I’m thinking about them and that I love them.”
Offensive lineman Chance Sorrell announced Monday on Twitter that he is retiring from football because of what he called “many injuries throughout my college career and with this final repeating knee injury that I am currently and have been fighting for the past year.”
Sorrell, a redshirt sophomore, went on to add, “This decision, which is heavy on my heart, has been discussed, reviewed and agreed upon by the team doctors, training staff, coach Franklin and my parents.”
Sorrell noted he will remain with the program as an intern on the strength staff for the rest of his college career.