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Penn State Football: Bill O'Brien Sets Record Straight On 'Paterno People'

by on January 14, 2014 1:00 PM

Former Penn State head coach Bill O'Brien's exit wasn't the most graceful, but it may have also been a little bit overblown.

During a candid phone exchange with Patriot News reporter Dave Jones, O'Brien expressed a frustration with a so-called faction of fans O'Brien referred to as "Paterno People." While O'Brien's frustrations may have partially stemmed from various groups of the Nittany Lion faithful, O'Brien took the time on Tuesday morning on ESPN Radio's Mike and Mike show to set the record straight.

"That's not accurate at all," O'Brien said when asked if "Paterno People" were partially to blame for his departure. "I felt like I had a ton of support at Penn State. My staff had a ton of support at Penn State, and I regret that, that conversation even took place. I regret that.

"I know I had a ton of support at Penn State. Penn State is a special place. I believe in what we did while at Penn State, I think Penn State is in a better spot now than it was two years ago. I think my staff, myself, our players are very proud of that. I feel like Penn State is a place where you can win national championships and Big Ten championships."

"I felt very good about the support I had there and I apologize who took that conversation obviously the wrong way. I regret that conversation but again Penn State is a special place and Penn State is going to be in a great place in the coming years."

O'Brien would later head to the Jim Rome show to express the same views, both interviews focusing largely on his new job as Texans' head coach, but also mentioning his departure from Penn State.

There is little doubt certain things frustrated O'Brien while at Penn State and there is little doubt that he was well aware of the support system he had while head coach. O'Brien will never be able to please everyone, but his comments on Tuesday may help at least put this particular saga to rest.

You can listen the full interview here.

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Ben Jones covers Penn State football and basketball for He's on Twitter as @Ben_Jones88.
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