3. Trust Franklin
The 2023 season is a big one for Penn State Football.
The Nittany Lions have a loaded roster and a somewhat favorable schedule with Michigan and Iowa at home and the matchup with Ohio State coming after a game against UMass.
If Penn State is going to make the College Football Playoff, 2023 just might be the year.
So, for Franklin to trust his defensive line to a first-time position coach says a lot about Barnes. Franklin clearly feels Barnes is capable of doing big things right off the bat and can get the defensive line prepared for big matchups against physical teams like Illinois, Iowa and Michigan.
There will likely be some growing pains with Barnes, but it helps that he has two experienced and talented starters at defensive end in Adisa Isaac and Chop Robinson. There are more questions at defensive tackle that Barnes will have to answer, but Franklin believes he can do it.
Franklin has made some quality hires over the past few offseasons, it’s hard to question him when it comes to bringing in new assistants.