Penn State, James Franklin respond to recent Texas A&M rumors


His recruiting efforts have soared recently after a Big Ten championship in 2016 and a 6-0 start this season, landing prospects from New Jersey, Virginia, Texas, Florida, Michigan and OH, among other states.

A&M has devoted huge resources to football since it moved to the SEC, but Franklin, a Pennsylvania native, has Penn State rolling at a high level on the field and in recruiting. The report, written by Dennis Dodd (who visited State College this week) can basically be translated to this: Penn State believes Texas A&M may go after Franklin and is doing what it can to prepare for that possible pursuit.

Franklin, 45, is 31-15 in three-plus seasons with the Nittany Lions.

After coming over from Vanderbilt, Franklin has turned the Nittany Lions into a national powerhouse once again and has them looking like one of the best teams in the country. His buyout is $2 million.

"My family and I are very thankful to be a part of the Penn State community", Franklin said in a written statement after the contract announcement. Franklin agreed to a three-year, $19.75 million extension in August that runs through the 2022 season. It was a sign of good faith from both sides after the progress Franklin and the program have made over the past year. He was the 2012 SEC Coach of the Year, mentored Heisman victor Johnny Manziel and is one of six active coaches to defeat Nick Saban's Alabama Crimson Tide. Three consecutive eight-win seasons isn't what Aggie fans expected after Sumlin's guys tallied 11 wins in his inaugural campaign - but a lot of steps still need to be taken before Texas A&M drops Sumlin, potentially pursues Franklin, and more.