Two-Minute Drill: Beckman and O’Brien Square Off
By Brandon Castel
CHICAGO — It was an awkward afternoon at the Big Ten Media Kickoff Luncheon in Chicago as both Tim Beckman and Bill O’Brien took the podium.
Illinois’ first-year head coach admitted to sending assistant coaches to State College while Penn State’s coach denied any knowledge of kids who want to transfer or schools who are actively recruiting them.
Here is a two-minute rundown of what Beckman, O’Brien and Indiana coach Kevin Wilson had to say Thursday.
Beckman Admits Sending Coaches to State College
* Excited about Illinois program. Been around football for 47 years.
* Seemed uncomfortable with questions about recruiting PSU players. Said his coaches never went on campus, but then admitted they were in State College.
*Also admitted his coaches phoned some players and invited them to talk.
* Said Offensive line biggest problem on offense. Will install wide open, spread offense.
* Provided Penn State with names of players who they were interested in. No problem with recruiting their guys since within NCAA guidelines.
* Said road games at Wisconsin, Michigan and OSU are big challenges.
O’Brien Focused on PSU Players who Stay
* Said PSU team is sticking together. Ready to turn the page.
* After NCAA presser talked with players about education at PSU, commitment to each other, bond with staff, adversity, games in Beaver Stadium like bowl games, staff develops NFL talent.
* Doesn't care what schools are on campus. Doesn't know which are there. No players have informed him they intend to transfer.
* He refused to comment on RB Silas Redd and has not spoken to Beckman about having coaches on campus.
* Thinks offensive line can be good, QB McGloin smart, tough competitive, depth at WR, TE decent depth, RB good depth. Also said he will call the offensive plays this season.
* Thinks the defensive front seven good. Secondary in good shape. Feels good about defense.
* Time to move forward, turn the page. Sanctions are what they are. Stands by the decisions of the board of trustees.
* He's accustomed to handling a roster of 65 considering he's come from the NFL. Doesn't think it's as bad as everyone says it is.
Wilson Hoping to Turn Things Around at Indiana
* Recruited 6 JUCO players. Played a lot of freshmen last year. Adjusted schemes on defense. Defense was a big problem last year. Also needs to score more to help defense. Third down stops will be very important because defense will not be great yet.
* Gave up more rush yards than pass yards last year. Run defense must be better. Junior college guys should help on defense. Only has 5 scholarship seniors on team.
* When you are a 1-11 football no job is safe. You are trying to change the culture of the football program. Cannot be a good team in B1G with average quarterback play.
* Said he would not reach out to kids at PSU, but would listen if kids reached out to him.
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