While talking to reporters on a conference call about a Sports Illustrated story that claims changes in Penn State's medical staff have resulted in worse care for athletes, O'Brien's voice was raised for most of his answers. He sounded angry. Perplexed. Emotional. Defensive. Frustrated. He got so angry at one point he asked the Penn State spokesman how many questions were left. He was told six remained. He snapped back that no, there would be just three more (though he ended up sticking around for some extras, even though he had his son's little league game to get to).
The call went on for almost 22 minutes. Ben Jones at StateCollege.com posted the audio clip of the conference call, so listen for yourself:
O'Brien stepped into perhaps the most difficult situation for a coach in recent college football history. Maybe ever. Penn State football not only had the crushing (and arguably unfair) NCAA sanctions from the Jerry Sandusky scandal, it placed itself in a position to be open to more scrutiny than most programs, especially after promising full transparency. And he was replacing a legend in Joe Paterno.
You have to wonder, as O'Brien has to answer questions about a controversy no other coach in America has dealt with this offseason, if the situation is even more difficult than he figured.Read More »from Bill O’Brien still has the hardest job in college football