Terry Smith

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Penn State promotes from within to fill DC vacancy


A day after losing defensive coordinator Bob Shoop to Tennessee, Penn State head coach James Franklin has found his new defensive coordinator in Happy Valley, and he did not have to look very far. Penn State has announced the promotion of Brent Pry to the defensive coordinator role after previously serving as a co-defensive coordinator and linebackers coach.

“Brent has had a dramatic impact on our defense and our team for the last five years and he is very deserving of this opportunity to move into the defensive coordinator position,” Franklin said, referring to Pry’s time on Franklin’s staff at Vanderbilt in addition to the past two years at Penn State. “Brent’s promotion will help make this a smooth transition and allow us to continue to build one of the top defenses in the country.”

Pry is a native Pennsylvanian and was expected to be a top candidate for the defensive coordinator job as soon as Shoop leaving for Tennessee became likely. Having already worked with Penn State’s defense gives the Nittany Lions a pretty smooth transition and allows for some stability with the current team and in recruiting.

Franklin made a couple of other adjustments to the coaching staff as well. Defensive recruiting coordinator and cornerbacks coach Terry Smith will continue holding those titles in addition to his newly promoted position as assistant head coach. Defensive line coach Sean Spencer will now be serving as the running game coordinator.