UNIVERSITY PARK (Nittany Nation) — The inferno rages around Michigan football, its former staffer Connor Stallions, and whether or not embattled head coach Jim Harbuagh will even make it to Happy Valley this weekend. But James Franklin wasn’t having it Monday.
“I’m focused on all the stuff I see on film,” he said. “When I say ‘see on film,’ what we see on the coaches copy of the film, the stuff that’s going on between the sidelines, the 53 and a third, that’s that’s what we’re focused on.”
Franklin deflected two questions about Michigan’s sign-stealing allegations instead trying to focus on Saturday’s top-10 matchup in Beaver Stadium.
“There’s no doubt about it that in these types of games we have to show that we can manufacture yards and points against whoever we’re playing,” he said.
Despite hanging 51-points Saturday in a drubbing at Maryland, Franklin found himself facing questions about performance against quality opponents. Under his tutelage, the Nittany Lions are 3-16 against top-10 opponents, including a highly scrutinized loss at Ohio State in October.
In that loss, Penn State’s offense crumbled facing one of the top defenses in the country.
“You’re playing the No. 1, No. 2, No. 3 defense in the country,” he said. “They’re ranked that for a reason.”
Michigan offers a bigger challenge for Penn State and is statistically to best team in the nation allowing the fewest yards and points-per-game. The Wolverines are holding teams to just 6.7 points, and no team has held it’s opponents under 10 PPG for a full season since Alabama in 2011.
“As a coaching staff, we have got to be patient and we have got to capitalize when those moments come, because there’s about four to six moments or plays a game in these types of games that you got to capitalize on them and we need to capitalize,” he added.