Penn State acting athletic director David Joyner has been leading what was reported to be a six-person search committee for Joe Paterno's replacement as head football coach since late November, but as Yahoo!'s Pat Forde reports, there may have been another person of influence working with the group.
Several football insiders insist Penn State could have hired a proven college coach. For reasons which have not been publicly articulated, the search instead veered toward largely anonymous NFL assistants. Word from some is that "Monday Night Football" analyst Ron Jaworski is a friend of one of the search committee members and became involved in the search, helping steer it that way.
Reports that New England Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O'Brien has agreed to take the job would appear to match with Forde's "anonymous NFL assistants," mold that he says Jaworski has been "steering" the committee toward. Of course, at this late hour, Penn State has still not confirmed that O'Brien is, in fact, the guy, so it remains to be seen if that is the final, absolute decision. Regardless, if it is, it would appear Penn State fans now have someone to thank.
For the latest on the Penn State coaching search, stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh.