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January 10, 2014

The stage is set

Penn State has sent out the press release, news media are atwitter, and Nittany Lion fans are ready.

A 4:15 p.m. press conference has been set for the Beaver Stadium Media Room on Saturday, and though there still has not been an official confirmation of the news, James Franklin is expected to be announced as the Nittany Lions' 16th head football coach in program history.

"Penn State President Rodney Erickson and Director of Athletics Dave Joyner are scheduled make a major announcement on Saturday, January 11 at 4:15 p.m. in the Beaver Stadium media room," the press release reads.

A source has confirmed with Blue White Illustrated that as of Friday afternoon - in the most technical of terms - there was still nothing "official" to report, as Franklin has yet to be approved by a special session of the school's board of trustees finance committee, based on various reports Friday morning.

The announcement Saturday afternoon will end what has been, officially, a 10-day search by a six-person committee tasked with finding Penn State's next football head coach following the departure of Bill O'Brien to the NFL's Houston Texans on New Year's Eve.

Franklin, 41-years old, is credited with revitalizing a Vanderbilt University football program that had been considered one of the lowliest in all of college football in his first head coaching gig.

Finishing with a 6-7 overall record in the 2011 season, capped with a Liberty Bowl loss, Franklin followed with back-to-back 9-4 seasons, including a BBVA Compass Bowl win in 2013 and a No. 23 final ranking in the Associated Press poll.

Blue White Illustrated will continue to monitor this story as it develops and will have full coverage from Saturday's press conference.




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