Penn State Football: Linebacker Brennan Franklin Leaves Team
Freshman linebacker Brennan Franklin has left the team for personal reasons, the school announced Tuesday.
Franklin was the first player to commit to Penn State after the NCAA handed down the sanctions.
“It’s sad,” his high school coach, Richard Taylor said Wednesday by phone. “I know how excited he was about going there.” Taylor did not know of the circumstances surrounding Franklin’s departure. A call to the Franklin home was not immediately returned.
Franklin is the second player coach Bill O’Brien announced will not return for the 2013 season. Monday, he said running back Curtis Dukes left the team.
Like Dukes, it appeared like an uphill climb for Franklin to see any sort of significant playing time, even with the departure of linebackers Mike Mauti and Gerald Hodges.
Glenn Carson is expected to retain his starting middle linebacker position. Mike Hull, one of the Nittany Lions’ best young players, is a strong favorite to start on the outside. Nyeem Wartman, who missed most of 2012 with a knee injury, and Ben Kline, who contributed on special teams, are two other names to watch at the position heading into spring.
Still, with the scholarship limitations starting to kick in, depth will be an ongoing issue for the program’s immediate future. 2013 is the first of four years Penn State will only be able to sign 15 scholarship players, and it must cap its total number of scholarship players at 65 starting in 2014.