College Football

Press Conference Notebook: James Franklin 10/10/23

Press Conference Notebook: James Franklin 10/10/23


By: Tyler Millen – Student Writer

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – A week-long hiatus following five consecutive wins for No. 6/5 Penn State transitions into a time-honored tradition with the 103rd homecoming game set for Saturday.        


Penn State has won 14 of its last 17 homecoming games. The Nittany Lions will also don their “Generations of Greatness” uniforms for the sixth time in the last seven years. 


The Nittany Lions and Minutemen will face off for the second time in history following the first matchup in 2014.


Hunter Nourzad Impacting The Culture  


Redshirt senior Hunter Nourzad has been a collegiate football player since 2018 and has played 36 games over five seasons. Nourzad missed an entire year in 2020 as Cornell didn’t play due to Coronavirus. 


Nourzad chose to return to Happy Valley after a strong 2022 campaign that featured an All-Big Ten honorable mention selection. The decision to return allowed Penn State to fill the shoes of 2023 second-round pick Juice Scruggs who anchored the center spot. 


Nourzad has displayed his versatility on the offensive line at both guard and center. Franklin recognized how the The Walker School product has “been a great culture fit for us,” and is a veteran who’s earned everyone’s respect. Franklin shared how Nourzad’s return has allowed him to maximize his experience on the field and in the classroom. 


“I think the way he’s playing right now, his ability to play center and guard, is extremely valuable, and his approach, his maturity; gosh, he’s getting an MBA right now from Penn State,” Franklin said. “When he’s not in class, he’s in the weight room, stretching, working on mobility. He does a great job with his nutrition and hydration. He’s just one of those guys that I think is a really good example of the importance of maturity on your football team and has done a phenomenal job.”


Manny Diaz Bringing New Perspectives


Defensive coordinator and linebackers coach Manny Diaz has 25 years…

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