At various points through the last couple of years, the futures of Rob Bolden and Curtis Drake at Penn State have been uncertain, the former due to potential transfers and the latter to injury/off-field issues.
With a new head coach in place, though, it appears not much has changed on that front.
By way of StateCollege.com, both BlueWhiteIllustrated.com and Lions247.com are reporting that neither Bolden nor Drake are currently on campus for what the website describes as the first set of summer classes. No reason for Bolden’s absence was given, while academics are apparently behind Drake no-show.
The school has declined to comment on the status of Bolden and/or Drake, or any other player for that matter.
If Bolden decided to transfer from the Nittany Lions program, it would be one of the least surprising developments of the offseason. While he’s been an off-and-on starter at quarterback the past two seasons, a possibility of a transfer hasn’t been far away since he (sorta) lost the starting job midway through his true freshman season in 2010.
Following that season — which included a bowl loss that saw Matt McGloin toss five interceptions and never saw Bolden on the field — Bolden announced in Jan. of 2011 that he would be transferring. After being denied a release from his scholarship by then-head coach Joe Paterno, Bolden decided to stay — until he didn’t. It was until July of last year that Bolden finally decided to remain in Happy Valley.
After an off-again, on-again relationship with the starting job again in 2011, Bolden and McGloin — as well as Paul Jones — resumed their competition under the watchful eye of Bill O’Brien. The first-year coach declined to name a starter coming out of the spring, although he acknowledged earlier this week that he will name a starter by the end of this month.
McGloin has been the presumptive front-runner, although there are some indications Jones could grab the job heading into summer camp. Based on Bolden’s reported absence, he may have gotten the same sense — or the official word — as well.
As for Drake? From July of 2010 through December of 2011, the erstwhile wide receiver was cited for a fight with a PSU basketball player; suffered a second broken left leg; cited for a fight that occurred on St. Patrick’s Day; allegedly knocked McGloin out in a post-practice locker room fight; and didn’t travel with the team for its bowl game due to personal reasons.
Upon O’Brien’s arrival, Drake was moved from offense to defense. Now, thanks to issues in the classroom, he could be moving on from the entire program as well.