Two weeks later, Bill O’Brien is still searching for his first win at Penn State.
He hopes the third time, Saturday in Beaver Stadium against Navy (0-1), will be the charm for his Nittany Lions (0-2). O’Brien watched his team, and specifically his defense, turn in an outstanding road performance last week at Virginia only to watch kicker Sam Ficken miss a game-winning field goal attempt as time expired. It was the kicker’s fourth miss of the day, and the nail in the coffin of a heartbreaking 17-16 loss.
This week, the Nittany Lions welcome the Navy Midshipmen on Military Appreciation Day at Beaver Stadium. While Penn State will be honoring the Midshipmen who serve the country, they’ll also be honoring their own with service time: fullback P.J. Byers and defensive end Brent Smith. Byers is an active member of the Navy and will become an officer once he graduates while Smith has spent two tours of duty in Iraq in addition to eight years in the Marines.
O’Brien knows that facing a serv...