How could a nearly two-month football coaching search suddenly drop a brand new name just as it's winding down? You tell me! Sunday morning, ESPN's Adam Schefter called New England Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O'Brien perhaps "the leading candidate" to take the Penn St. Nittany Lions job, which will hopefully end soon after the team's Jan. 2 bowl game.
See for yourself:
@AdamSchefter Patriots OC Bill O'Brien has emerged as a leading candidate, if not the leading candidate, to be hired as Joe Paterno's successor at Penn St
O'Brien has no immediately apparent ties to PSU and has no head coaching experience.
He does have extensive college experience, however, which has become something of a rarity among reported Nittany Lions candidates. He's coached at somewhat nearby Brown and Maryland, plus Duke and Georgia Tech -- the latter stint included being Chan Gailey's assistant head coach for one year.
Related: Jerry Sandusky fallout, replacing Joe Paterno, and Penn State's movement to support sexual abuse survivors. For more on the Nittany Lions, visit Penn State blog Black Shoe Diaries. More college football news.