Blue White Illustrated

UCF Pregame

Penn State Sports Magazine

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DUBLIN – For Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenberg, the heckling has been going on for weeks. Although the Nittany Lions have yet to play a game, and although Hackenberg appears poised to improve upon his Big Ten Freshman of the Year campaign last fall, the trash talk that every Penn State start- ing quarterback must endure has already begun in earnest. The source is among the most unlikely, though. Following a Wednesday aCernoon walk- through at a cold, windy, rain-soaked prac- tice field at University College Dublin, the Nittany Lion sophomore sat sur- rounded by reporters and outed the taunting culprit: his father, Erick. "My dad is out here," Hackenberg said, acknowledging the benefit of having his biggest backer in the coun- try with him. The problem? "He's playing golf. He's starting at Shannon [Golf Club] and playing all the way over. I'm not going to be able to see him till Friday night. P R E G A M E R E P O R T P E N N S T A T E V S . U C F 8 : 3 0 A . M . ( E T ) , A U G . 3 0 E S P N 2 UCF FACTS COACH George O'Leary (Univer- sity of New Hampshire, '68) COACH'S RECORD 124-89 in 17 seasons as a head coach; 72-56 in 10 seasons at UCF 2013 RECORD 12-1, 8-0 American Athletic Conference RECORD VS. PSU The Nittany Lions lead this nonconference se- ries, 2-1. MOST RECENT MEETING Blake Bortles completed 20 of 27 passes for 288 yards and three touchdowns as the Knights out- lasted Penn State, 34-31, last September in Beaver Stadium. GOOD NEWS O'Leary has done a marvelous job of building UCF into a perennial postseason contender. The team, which competed in Division III when it debuted in 1979, has made six bowl appearances since joining Division I-A in 1996, all of which have taken place during O'Leary's tenure. BAD NEWS At age 68, O'Leary won't be coaching the Knights for decades to come. He recently debunked a Fox Sports report that he was thinking about retiring after UCF's season opener against the Lions, but as he told, "I'm not going to be 72 [and still be] coaching." DID YOU KNOW? The University of Central Florida is relatively young as an institu- tion, having opened in 1963 – more than a century after Penn State. But its enrollment of nearly 60,000 ranks second in the na- tion. Only Arizona State has more students. TOURIST TRAP James Franklin keeps Nittany Lions focused on game N A T E   B A U E R | N B A U E R @ B L U E W H I T E O N L I N E . C O M Tim Owen A U G U S T 2 8 , 2 0 1 4 B L U E W H I T E O N L I N E . C O M 1 BUSINESS CLASS Franklin has strived to portray Penn State's first inter- national game as "a business trip," not a sightseeing excursion.

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