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Saturday, January 7, 2012
Notes from O'Brien's Penn State intro

By Adam Rittenberg

For the first time since Feb. 19, 1966, Penn State has introduced a new head football coach. Bill O'Brien is the new man in charge, and he conducted himself well during his first public appearance in the new job. He was energetic and confident and hit on most of the issues Penn State fans needed to hear.

O'Brien, 42, received a five-year contract that will pay him $950,000 annually plus a five percent annual increase and performance incentives not to exceed $200,000 per year. The deal includes $1 million annually from TV and radio, and $350,000 from Nike. Total compensation: $2.3 million.

Before getting to the notes, O'Brien finished his opening remarks with a letter he wrote addressed to the Penn State football community, portions of which had expressed outrage at his hiring and the search process.

Bill O'Brien
New Lions coach Bill O'Brien said he has "a lot of confidence" in his ability to lead Penn State through "what some people would say is a tough time right now."
It reads:
"We respect the right to one's opinions, beliefs and contributions to Penn State. We admire one's loyalties to Penn State, Penn State football, its grand tradition, coach [Joe] Paterno and all of its football staffs, and present and former players. We respectfully request the opportunity to earn your trust through communication and field it through our abilities, ethics, beliefs, work ethic and commitment to Penn State. In time, you will find that we have more common interests and goals than not.

"We are now with you. You should be proud of Penn State's numerous accomplishments. You should be proud of Penn State's football program. You should love this school. You are why we love to be here. We want you to know that you will always be welcome and are part of our program because we are Penn State."

Here are some notes:
More to come on O'Brien's hiring ...