The Penn State Nittany Lions may need to get a new head because they have hit their ceiling under James Franklin. Until he does a better job of game management and play-calling offensively, this will only be a 10-2 team in the Big Ten, as the Nittany Lions are never beating the Michigan Wolverines or the Ohio State Buckeyes ever again. This is a bit hyperbolic, but he is completely by owned these rivals.
Despite Michigan finding out that its head coach Jim Harbaugh was going to be suspended for Saturday's game on Friday night, Franklin and the offensive coaching staff could not get it done. Quarterback Drew Allar may have had his moments, but the only reason Penn State was in this game was the great work of defensive coordinator Manny Diaz. Maybe he should be promoted from within?
For the amount of money Franklin makes at Penn State, you would think he could beat either Michigan or Ohio State once in a blue moon. The Buckeyes have largely owned Franklin since he took over in Happy Valley nearly a decade ago. While Michigan was rebuilding in the early Harbaugh years, that is a buzzsaw program that does not plan on slowing down anytime soon. Franklin just ain't it, man.
As expected, here is how social media absolutely harpooned him after Penn State's 24-15 home loss.
Social media fires Penn State head coach James Franklin into the sun
You can say that Michigan is the better team, which it is, but cannot deny the fact that Franklin continues to not get it done at a Top 15 program vs. their relative equals. Penn State is clearly third in the Big Ten East hierarchy, but the Nittany Lions feel closer to Iowa and Wisconsin than they do to Michigan and Ohio State right now. Allar is a first-year starter, but this defense has carried Franklin.
Putting all your faith in a two-point conversion play call with Franklin on the headset is like trusting your state's lottery to fund your fortunes. It can fund your education, but it will probably fund somebody else's, if your state is smart. For a guy who won prolifically at Vanderbilt, Franklin is trying to jam a square peg into a round hole at a much easier job. This isn't rocket science; this is only Penn State...
For the money that Franklin is making, I think there is a chance the Pennsylvanian economy could go under if Penn State wanted to negotiate his buyout. Yes, we are talking about all of Pittsburgh and Philadelphia paying a great price for this man's inability to do much of anything offensively. Honestly, let's just have Diaz call plays throughout the entire game. It has to be better than whatever this is.
Overall, we can officially cross Penn State off as a College Football Playoff contender. There were 11 teams in contention for it entering Week 11, but now there are only 10 after Penn State's second Big Ten defeat. Once again, the Big Ten East will inevitably be decided by whoever ends up winning The Game between Michigan and Ohio State on Thanksgiving Weekend. It is in The Big House this year.
The biggest difference between Franklin and what Texas A&M is dealing with in Jimbo Fisher is that the price of oil could knock one snake oil salesman out of a job in College State. Penn State is screwed.