Penn State confirmed the rumors Wednesday afternoon, as it announced that starting wide receiver Saeed Blacknall and starting linebacker Manny Bowen were suspended for the Rose Bowl Game due to a violation of teams rules.
LB Manny Bowen and WR Saeed Blacknall are the suspended #PennState players. They are here, but NOT playing in the Rose Bowl.— Andrew Callahan (@ACallahan_247) December 28, 2016
Being starters, Blacknall and Bowen both play pivotal roles for the Nittany Lions, so this is quite the blow for Penn State. At wide receiver, expect to see more of DeAndre Thompkins, who replaced Blacknall earlier this season when the latter missed a couple games with an injury. And at linebacker, you’ll see more of California native Koa Farmer, who continues the transition from safety to linebacker full-time.
While it isn’t exactly clear what Blacknall and Bowen did other than “violate team rules”, it’s refreshing to see that James Franklin isn’t afraid to bring the hammer down when necessary. Rose Bowl or not, if you act like a knucklehead, there will be repercussions.