After five years as a Patriots assistant and a good first season as the head coach at Penn State, Bill O’Brien is viewed by many as a future NFL head coach. But Penn State Athletic Director David Joyner says O’Brien will remain at Penn State for a long time.
Joyner said he talks to O’Brien regularly and that the two of them are on the same page about O’Brien staying at the school for the long haul.
“I can tell you we talk in terms of years and years. We make plans for years and years,” Joyner told the Associated Press.
Of course, plenty of college football coaches have signed contracts to remain at a school for “years and years” and then walked away with “years and years” left on that contract. And Joyner seems to understand that it’s at least possible that some NFL owner will decide to pay O’Brien’s buyout and lure him away from Penn State. Joyner just doesn’t think it’s likely to happen any time soon.
“First, of all I think we’re going to have this guy for a long time. I truly, truly believe that,” he said. “But whenever the day comes that Bill may chooses to leave — if it’s five years from now, if it’s 10 years; he may never choose to leave, this may be his last job, I certainly hope so — then we’ll adapt and deal with it.”
The bad news for Joyner and Penn State fans is that O’Brien leaving for the NFL may be a problem they have to deal with sooner than they think. The good news is that if O’Brien is fielding NFL offers, it will be because he’s winning at Penn State.