Photo Gallery: Day I at Big Ten Media Days | VIDEO: Coach O'Brien on Day I
Transcript: Bill O'Brien Big Ten Media Day Press Conference
CHICAGO, Ill. - Coach Bill O'Brien and seniors Glenn Carson, John Urschel and Malcolm Willis kicked off Big Ten Media Days on Wednesday at the Hilton downtown Chicago.
O'Brien and the trio of players participated in a wide range of media activities throughout the day. Stay tuned for continuing coverage of Penn State's trip to the 2013 Big Ten Media Days.
9 a.m. - Robinson Tabbed as Player to Watch
The first piece of Penn State news from Big Ten Media Days broke at 9 a.m. on Wednesday when the conference announced that junior wide receiver Allen Robinson was named one of 10 Big Ten Players to Watch heading into the 2013 season.
A candidate for the Biletnikoff Award, Robinson flourished in Coach Bill O'Brien's dynamic offense in 2012 en route to Big Ten Receiver of the Year and first-team All-Big Ten selection by the coaches, media, BTN.com and ESPN.com. Having made three catches for 29 yards in 2011, the vastly talented Robinson broke the Penn State season receptions record with 77 catches last year, shattering the previous mark of 63 held by All-Americans O.J. McDuffie (1992) and Bobby Engram (1995). Robinson's 77 receptions also obliterated the Penn State sophomore season mark of 48 that had been held by Engram (1993) and Deon Butler (2006).
A starter in all 12 games last year, Robinson's 1,013 yards marked just the third 1,000-yard receiving season in Penn State history as he joined Engram (twice) as the only 1,000-yard single season receivers to wear the blue and white. The former Orchard Lake St. Mary's Prep standout also broke Freddie Scott's school sophomore season record of 973 yards in 1994. His 11 touchdown catches were tied for second-highest in a season at Penn State, along with Engram (1995), who holds the record with 13 touchdown grabs in 1993.
The 6-3 Robinson led the Big Ten in catches (77), receptions per game (6.4), receiving yards (1,013, 84.8 avg.) and touchdown catches (11) last year. His 66 points and 1,013 all-purpose yards were second on the team.
9:30 a.m. - Urschel Featured In USA Today
Senior guard John Urschel was featured on the front page of the sports section in Wednesday's USA Today. The national paper followed Urschel in Happy Valley last week and featured the standout student-athlete. Urschel and the Nittany Lion contingent arrived in Chicago set for session one of Big Ten Media Days just after 8 a.m. CT.
11 a.m. - One-on-One Interviews Kick Off Media Days
Head coach Bill O'Brien and the trio of players in Chicago opened the first day of media activities with several one-on-one interviews.
12 p.m. - Quoting the Nittany Lions
A collection of quotes during the morning session at Big Ten Media Day:
Coach O'Brien on John Urschel - "He deserves every bit of attention he gets. He is what Penn State is all about."
Coach O'Brien on Malcolm Willis - "Malcolm is a really good communicator and a really good leader."
Coach O'Brien on Glenn Carson - "Glenn is a heart and soul type of guy. He is a tough player. He brings great emotion to the defense."
Malcolm Willis - "This is the hardest working team I have ever been a part of."
Glenn Carson on making a big play - "The perfect hit is an adrenaline rush. It's like an addiction."
John Urschel on 2013 - "The goal is simple. We want to go out every Saturday and play the best football we can."
1:15 p.m. - Urschel Chats Live on ESPN.com
John Urschel spent some time with ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg for a live chat. The Nittany Lion senior received a question from Winnipeg, Canada, which we learned on Wednesday is Urschel's birthplace. He spent the first three years of his life in Canada.
2:15 p.m. - Coach O'Brien Addresses the Media
Head coach Bill O'Brien stepped to the podium inside the Grand Ballroom of the Hilton at 2:15 p.m. ET for his 15-minute session with the more than 500 credentialed media in attendance at Big Ten Kickoff.
"Excited to be here," O'Brien said. "This is my second Big Ten media day. It's always a sign that obviously the season is right around the corner. And brought three players with us here for these two days. John Urschel is an offensive lineman for us. Malcolm Willis, safety for us. And Glenn Carson, middle linebacker for us. It's great to be with them. It's good to see the other coaches in the league. I have a lot of respect for all the coaches in this league."
O'Brien told the media that he anticipates naming a starting quarterback mid-way through training camp. Now, the team will head into preseason practice with sophomore Tyler Ferguson and freshman Christian Hackenberg competing for the starting job. O'Brien said he is excited to work with the young, talented players when practice begins on Aug. 5.
"You know, one thing that's really exciting about working with young quarterbacks is that you get a chance to really mold that quarterback," O'Brien said. "You get a chance to really teach that quarterback. And Charlie Fisher and I are going to do that and work hard at teaching our quarterbacks how to play in our offense and managing a game and play smart, tough Penn State football. We are excited about that."
2:45 p.m. - Open Media Session
O'Brien and the trio of players moved into a podium media session for 30 minutes at 2:45 p.m. Check out highlights from Coach O'Brien below.
VIDEO: Coach O'Brien on Day One of Big Ten Media Days
5 p.m. - Day One Roundup
The Nittany Lion contingent wrapped up a day full of interviews with TV affiliates, radio stations, online reporters and print reporters in the late afternoon hours in Chicago. Day two of Big Ten Media Days will feature two hours of open media on Thursday morning. The Nittany Lion contingent will then participate in a Big Ten autograph session with the fans. From there, the 42nd Annual Big Ten Kickoff will take place in the International Ballroom of the Hilton. Urschel will address the sold out crowd of 1,800 people on behalf of the Big Ten players at the Kickoff. Stay tuned for more coverage from Thursday's events.
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