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Penn State Football: Tyler Bowen Named Interim Offensive Coordinator; Franklin Offers Update on Search

by on December 20, 2019 11:15 AM

Penn State tight ends coach Tyler Bowen will act as the Nittany Lions' interim offensive coordinator for Penn State's Cotton Bowl appearance against Memphis next week, head coach James Franklin announced on Friday.

"Tyler is stepping into the responsibility very similar to how Ricky Rahne did," Franklin said, referencing Rahne's once interim status as offensive coordinator for the post-2017 Fiesta Bowl.

Bowen — who spent the entire season in the coaches' box — was perhaps the most obvious choice on Penn State's current staff to take over the interim role following Rahne's departure to become head coach at Old Dominion given his location throughout the year.

Offensive analyst and analytics coordinator Kirk Campbell has been named the interim quarterbacks coach during Penn State's time in Dallas.

As far as the ongoing search for an offensive coordinator, Franklin noted that nearly all of the candidates are sitting coordinators at the collegiate or NFL level. While Franklin didn't offer up any specifics in terms of who he might be talking to, he did give a few overall requirements that he is looking for in his fourth offensive coordinator while in State College.

"Obviously been talking to a lot of different people, and then been doing a lot of different studies from a data perspective," Franklin said.

"We need someone that's going to be able to come in and blend. We don't really want someone to come in and start all over again. You look across the country, even in our conference where they took the first four or five games for people get used to a new system. And we're looking for somebody that has the experience as well as the humility to come in and blend to say, 'OK, what are the things that I have conviction about for me to run my offense, that, you know, I can't really change? I need these things to be comfortable in calling the offense and what things can we keep the same from a verbiage standpoint, so that the players are having to learn a completely new system?'

"So between conversations and flights and trying to balance the game and finish up recruiting and then also the hiring process is a lot this time of year. So there's nothing like it, back at 4 a.m. in the morning and have a 7 a.m. staff meeting after after talking to someone, so that's just kind of how it is this time of year and hopefully we can make some decisions sooner rather than later."

Franklin said there is no timeline for the hire.

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