Transcript: Franklin I Transcript: Brown and Buchholz I Watch the Press Conference I Photo Gallery
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Penn State head coach James Franklin met with members of the media in his weekly press conference Tuesday afternoon. Linebacker Cam Brown and defensive lineman Ryan Buchholz joined Franklin for a pair of media sessions during Northwestern week.
For Franklin, he had high praise for the Wildcats, who much like a previous Iowa team, have coaching consistency across the board with one of the longest tenured head coaches in the Big Ten.
"Very little change in his career there in his staffs," Franklin said. "Offensively, defensively and special teams, they are going to play hard. They are going to be fundamentally sound. They have got good schemes. But what you see is what you get. You know, it's been a really nice model for them and it's going to be a challenge."
Although still early in the week, both Franklin and Brown were quick to point out Northwestern's physicality.
"They're a Big Ten team," Brown said. "They're playing very physical and that's the one thing standing out to me. Just like Iowa, they're physical. Indiana is a little bit more spread and throwing the ball, so they're definitely a switch up from Indiana. It's like going back to playing a Big Ten team that wants to run the ball. They throw a lot but it's kind of like the players play physical Big Ten football."
For Buchholz, preparations are already well underway with early film studies outlining what the Nittany Lion defense can key in on headed toward Saturday.
"Just yesterday we were going over the type of offense they run, usually we go over their favorite plays, so that if we see them in that formation we kind of have that idea in the back of our head. So we pretty much just went over some of the things based off their favorite formations, favorite plays, things like that."
On the Quote Board -
- Franklin on his earliest visits to the Gillikin household. Blake and twin brother Tyler are one of two sets of Penn State-Northwestern brothers set to meet on opposite teams Saturday.
"I remember going to Blake's house for the official visits and there was scuff marks and holes and everything all over the walls because his brother, Tyler, used to snap it to him and he would drop it and do a light punt in the house, so there was stuff all over the place. That should be pretty cool. I know talking to Mrs. Gillikin this week, she's already got a jersey that's been made that's sewed in half, so she's going to spend the first half on one sideline and the next half on the other one."
- Buchholz on the progress of Yetur Gross-Matos
"Definitely his knowledge of the defense. We're roommates in the hotel, and during our tests, I'll ask him if he has any questions, stuff like that, and each week he's having less and less questions about it. At practice, he's having less missed assignments and stuff like that, so I think his knowledge of the game is really helping. His talent, size and speed is obviously good enough to play at this level. Now it's the knowledge part he's getting down."
- Franklin on team speed.
"I think our team speed in general has improved dramatically. I think the defensive side of the ball and also special teams - I think it's been a major factor, there's no doubt. And obviously Saquon [Barkley] is somebody that everyone thinks about when you talk about speed. I think we would all agree that he has gotten faster. You know, three years ago, he got caught on a lot of those long runs."
- Brown on getting to his ideal weight, while also balancing size with speed and what he has learned from someone like Jason Cabinda.
with Jason, he's definitely shown me that you don't really need the weight to
bring the thump. With him losing that, it shows that weight isn't really a
crazy factor in the game."
- Buchholz on where he has improved the most from week one to now.
"I would say just with the plays. I know I've been in the system for three years now, but just getting more game experience with plays, especially last week with Indiana and their fast-pace offense. We would have to look at the sideline and get the call real quick and you've got to know what you're doing like that."