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Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien will become the new head coach of the Penn State Nittany Lions, according to a report from ESPN’s Chris Mortensen.
O’Brien will be replacing the legendary 84-year-old Joe Paterno. A press conference is set for Saturday.
The move allows Penn State to officially move on (in a football sense) from the Paterno era, which at its end was plagued by the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse scandal. Paterno was fired when the Sandusky scandal blew up and it was revealed that the legendary 84-year-0ld coach knew more about Sandusky’s actions than he let on.
O’Brien joined the Pats as an assistant in 2007, and worked his way up to become offensive coordinator this season. He previously spent time coaching in the college ranks at Brown, Georgia Tech, Maryland and Duke.
The last time a Patriots coordinator took a college head coaching job during the team’s playoff bye week was in 2004 when Charlie Weis accepted the Notre Dame job. The Pats won the Super Bowl that year.