Penn State coach James Franklin speaks at media day: watch the video

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STATE UNIVERSITY – Penn State coach James Franklin spoke to reporters for 35 minutes inside Beaver Stadium on Saturday. The Lions hold their annual media here, and the Lions leader opened things up.

One positional group that stood out in the first four days of preseason camp is the receivers.

“The depth isn’t even close compared to last year,” Franklin said. “There was a significant drop if we got into the second team last year, and I don’t think that’s the case this year.”

Franklin also hailed the debut of defensive coordinator Manny Diaz at Penn State.

“I think we’re in a good place,” Franklin said. “I’m happy with the way we’re playing defensively. I like what Manny does in terms of what I just talked about, in terms of how he emphasizes getting his hands on [footballs] in terms of fumbles, interceptions, true interceptions, steals and turnovers.

Below, you can watch the full video from Franklin’s press conference below.

Additionally, BWI’s Nate Bauer is blogging live from Saturday’s press conference. See some of the updates below and click the link to learn more.

Joining USC and UCLA Big Ten and impact on recruiting: Pat Kraft called it a day or two before it was publicly announced. It was good to have this conversation. I had read and heard things on Big Ten media days where this was not the case all over the league. So it was great to be prepared for it.

With recruiting, when you’re able to add two teams from California to the conference, it should allow you to have conversations you haven’t had in that region yet. The fact of not having an international airport here, in town, has a certain impact on that. But you look at this recruiting class, which is becoming more national. You need to take this approach, but when you add two schools like this to the conference, it should create more opportunities for the kids. They will go there for a few games and they will come here often.

LIVE UPDATES: James Franklin and coordinators speak at Penn State football media day

On the physique of the defensive backfield: Outside of each position meeting room, there are standout player lists. And if you look at recent trends, it’s a historic change at Penn State and Terry [Smith] gets a lot of credit for that. The depth at the corner is really good. Johnny Dixon it’s having a really good side, which is really important for them, not only to create depth, but also for the guys who could be indexed as starters are pushed to continue to start their work or could be replaced. It’s at all levels. Hardy has done a terrific job in the nickel and could take the next step. He took over this place.

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