Big 10 Football Morning Coffee: Penn State and Bill O'Brien Love the Tight End

Adam JacobiBig Ten Football Lead WriterMarch 28, 2012

"Hello, Penn State kids. If you see any tight ends please send them my way. Thank you."
"Hello, Penn State kids. If you see any tight ends please send them my way. Thank you."Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Rise and shine, friends. Here's what's going down in the Big Ten today.

Get used to the name Garry Gilliam. He's Penn State's backup tight end, and in case you didn't watch any New England football last year, Bill O'Brien loves using tight ends. says O'Brien will be counting on starter Kevin Haplea (three catches, 21 yards in 2011) and Gilliam extensively, and he's not averse to three-TE offensive sets either. No word still on Penn State's eligibility fight for tight ends "Schmob Schmonkowski" and "Schmaaron Schmernandez."

Michigan coach Brady Hoke said goodbye to his father, John Hoke, who died at 80 on Monday. The elder Hoke was a football player at Miami (Ohio) in his younger days, playing for a coach named Woody Hayes. Perhaps you've heard of him. Condolences to the Hoke family; losing a father is always, always difficult.

Wisconsin freshman running back Vonte Jackson is a near-lock to miss the season after tearing his ACL during his senior season, but he still enrolled early and is currently going bananas in the weight room. He came in at 181 pounds and is already near 200 pounds. At this rate, in 2014, he'll be the first Badger tailback over 320 pounds since Ron Dayne. 

Mgoblog has the transcripts of offensive linemen Ricky Barnum and Taylor Lewan's spring press-conference visits, if that's your thing. Barnum wants to hit 300 pounds, but "300 pounds healthy, not 300 pounds sloppy.” Wait, 300 pounds sloppy isn't a good look? Wish I had known that before I ordered this party sub for myself.

“I think this is really the strongest offensive line group we've had since we've been here,” MSU coach Mark Dantonio said Tuesday before the first spring practice of 2012, “and we've got numbers.” I don't know where folks are drafting Le'Veon Bell in this year's fantasy college-football leagues, but I do know it's not nearly high enough.