I hope this makes you guys as excited as it makes me...I've reduced his name to initials for privacy, but this makes me even happier about the hire.--CG
I signed up for the Black Shoe Diaries to post some comments about James Franklin but there is a 24 hour approval period so I though I would send you an email directly.
I grew up in Michigan and moved to Nashville, TN about 25 years ago. While I am a Michigan fan my in-laws are all huge Vanderbilt fans. Because of this I have followed James Franklin's time at Vanderbilt quite closely. I cannot overstate what a great leader of a program you have. What you saw in his introductory press conference is who he is %100 of the time. You have no idea the ride Penn State fans are getting ready to go on. He is tireless. He understands social media. He understands people and networking. He understands the importance of being visible in the community and communicating with players, alumni, fans and media. He understands how to be a representative of a university. When you take what he did at Vanderbilt, and you kind of have to be here to understand how huge his impact on Vanderbilt was, and project it to a program like Penn State it boggles the mind where it will end up. (Quite honestly I've been hoping Michigan would hire him.) Penn State is getting ready to go on quite a run in the B1G and nationally. I know this is a bold prediction but it wouldn't surprise me at all if 30 years from now we're talking about how James Franklin came closer to equaling Joe Paterno's impact than anyone thought possible.
One personal anecdote. My father-in-law played baseball for Vanderbilt in the 60's. He and several teammates were having a small reunion dinner at a local restaurant near the Vanderbilt campus. At some point my father-in-law noticed coach Franklin walk in. My father-in-law walks over to coach and asks if he wouldn't mind coming over to the table and just say hi as they are all Vanderbilt lettermen. He very kindly accepts, comes over shakes everyone's hand, has a quick conversation and goes on his way. The men finish their dinner kind of glowing from the experience. As they finish they ask the waitress for their bill. She informs them that coach Franklin picked up the check for the entire table. The guy just gets it. On top of that he's a pretty damn good football coach. Enjoy your new coach. I think there are very bright days ahead PSU. I'm not looking forward to the PSU - Michigan games for the foreseeable future.
Best of luck,