So, there’s a Penn State hire and the name Ferentz is involved.
And no, no, no, it’s not that one. Been there, done that, remember?
Penn State seems to be on the brink of hiring New England Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien. There’s no word from the school, but ESPN says it’s so, so it’s so. The reaction of Penn State-dom is mixed on the news. Mixed as in a mixture of fury, anger and confusion. Former PSU linebackers LeVar Arrington and Brandon Short have gone nuclear.
The Black Shoe Diaries folk — the Black Heart Gold Pants of Penn State — are measured in their skepticism. Here’s a link to the their thoughts.
With his boss going to State College, Brian Ferentz, the Patriots’ tight ends coach, is probably looking for a bump of some sort. Or, maybe more accurately, the Patriots are looking to bump him up.
Here are several links discussion the former Iowa center and, oh yeah, son of head coach Kirk Ferentz:
WEEI radio has Brian F on the short list to replace O’Brien, No. 2 actually. “At 28, he is on the younger side, but age certainly didn’t prevent the Patriots from promoting McDaniels, who was calling offensive plays at age 28 as the quarterbacks coach. (McDaniels would get the official title of offensive coordinator when he turned 29.) If they feel he’s ready, the Patriots could do the same thing with Ferentz, giving him a year as the unofficial OC before bequeathing the official title on him in another year or two.”
ESPNBoston.com’s Mike Reiss has Brian as a “potential in-house” candidate.
Boston.com pumps the brakes: “. . . tight ends coach Brian Ferentz might be a coaching star one day, but that time doesn’t appear to be now.”
Patriots.com is more in line with Boston.com: “Brian Ferentz – son of Iowa head coach and former Belichick assistant Kirk Ferentz – might be in line for a larger role on the offensive coaching staff although it would appear unlikely that he would jump right into the coordinator role.”
The Boston Herald joins in the pragmatism: “TE coach Brian Ferentz has impressed, but it’s a little early for that.
Of course, this could spin another way, though I don’t see it happening.
O’Brien and Brian Ferentz obviously know each other, working on the same staff that tries to get the ball from Tom Brady’s hand into Rob Gronkowski’s paws. Brian is young and tough and, if his coach voice is anywhere near his player voice, he’s charismatic.
So, it’s at least a possibility that a spot for Brian Ferentz on O’Brien’s staff at Penn State has been discussed. It probably went, “Brian, you’d never coach against your dad, right?” “Hell no.”
I don’t have any insight to what Brian’s life goals might be. Kirk said this in Arizona about the possibility of Brian joining Iowa’s staff:
“I would consider anybody, I think,” he said. “I would consider anybody who is a good fit for our program, including former players. We have a lot of former players.
“Here we go with the rumor mill.”
And Brian said this to Gazette sports columnist Mike Hlas this fall (Hlog link): “I get to do a lot of great things, be in the big arenas,” Ferentz said before the Iowa team his father coaches defeated Indiana at Kinnick Stadium, 45-24. “But I’ll be chasing the feeling I had here the rest of my life.”
Wherever Brian ends up or stays (that can happen, too, obviously), he’ll be an asset. Self-made players are the best coaches. He can’t miss, in my opinion.