New England Patriots: OC Bill O'Brien to Be Named Head Coach of Penn State

Tony Santorsa@@TonySantorsaSenior Writer IIJanuary 1, 2012

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 27:  Quarterback coach Bill O'Brien (C) talks to (L-R) Brian Hoyer #8, head coach Bill Belichick and Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots in the third quarter of the game against the Atlanta Falcons at Gillette Stadium on September 27, 2009 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

Ever since Bill Belichick took over the reins of the New England Patriots back in 2000, several of his coordinators have moved on to take head coaching jobs elsewhere. 

Romeo Crennel moved on to be head coach of the Cleveland Browns, Charlie Weis moved to the college ranks to be the head coach of Notre Dame, Eric Mangini left for the New York Jets' head coaching job, Josh McDaniels agreed to the head coaching job with the Denver Broncos and now New England's offensive coordinator, Bill O'Brien, is set to be the next Belichick disciple to take a head coaching job elsewhere. 

According to USA Today's Jonny Saraceno, O'Brien is set to be the next head of Penn State. Saraceno reports that only the "contract details need to be finalized." 

O'Brien joined Belichick's coaching staff back in 2007 as an offensive assistant, and was then promoted to the team's quarterback coach and play-caller in 2009. He was ultimately named the team's offensive coordinator prior to this season. 

O'Brien will replace the legendary Joe Paterno after JoePa was fired midseason by Penn State trustees after the arrest of Jerry Sandusky, his longtime assistant who faces child sexual abuse charges. 

Even if the O'Brien-to-Penn State transaction falls through, the current New England offensive coordinator's contract expires this season. He will likely be a hot commodity for the multiple head coaching jobs opening up across the NFL and college ranks. 

Follow <span class=

For more articles like this, check out