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Could James Franklin name the Penn State starting QB this week?

Could Penn State football fans be in for a big announcement this week?



Penn State Football, Penn State starting QB, James Franklin, Beau Pribula, Drew Allar
Penn State's two freshman quarterbacks, Drew Allar (left) and Beau Pribula, throw during warmups before the start of the 2022 Blue-White game at Beaver Stadium on Saturday, April 23, 2022, in State College. Hes Dr 042322 Bluewhite

With kickoff less than two weeks away, Penn State football is officially right around the corner. There are still many outstanding questions regarding the Nittany Lions roster as we rapidly approach Week 1 of the 2023 season. But, the question that is first and foremost for almost everyone right now is, when will James Franklin announce his starting QB? History tells us that an announcement regarding the competition between Drew Allar and Beau Pribula may be on the horizon in the coming days.

Drew Allar or Beau Pribula: Where does the Penn State starting QB competition currently stand?

While almost the entire outside world has believed for months that Drew Allar will be named the Penn State starting QB, officially, the former five-star prospect is still in a battle with fellow sophomore Beau Pribula for the top slot. At Penn State football media day at the start of the month, James Franklin essentially reiterated what he had said all spring: an open competition remains between Allar and Pribula for the starting job.

However, two weeks ago, we heard Franklin open up on the matter about as much as he has all offseason. During practice availability, the Penn State head coach told the media that Allar was receiving “the majority of the reps” with the first team, while Pribula was “getting a few.” For most, this confirmed what has been suspected for quite some time. And, while there have reportedly been high and low moments, by large, the intel out of fall camp is that Allar is performing well through three weeks.

With Week 1 almost here, it’s soon time for the Nittany Lions to transition out of fall camp and fully into West Virginia game prep. Obviously, at least internally, it would benefit the entire program to have a starting QB identified. The last time we had practice availability was a week ago on August 14, so updates out of camp have been few and far between the last few days. Penn State will open its doors again later this week; it’s almost guaranteed that James Franklin will be asked about the QB battle once he is made available to the media.

When has James Franklin historically announced his starting QBs?

If history holds true, then James Franklin may have a definitive answer on the Penn State starting QB competition during open practice this week, if not sooner.

The previous QB battles at Penn State under Franklin have ended with announcements in this final week of camp before Week 1 starts in earnest. In 2016, Franklin named Trace McSorley the Penn State starting QB on August 24, 10 days before the Nittany Lions’ season opener. Sean Clifford was named the starter on August 23, 8 days before the start of the 2019 campaign. The next time we hear from Franklin, it’ll be less than a week and a half before Penn State’s September 2 matchup against West Virginia.

So, as the saying goes, “Once is chance. Twice is a coincidence. Three times is a pattern.” We shall see if a pattern emerges with the Penn State football program this week.

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Matt is a co-owner and Editor in Chief of Basic Blues Nation. Launched in 2022, Basic Blues Nation is one of the fastest-growing websites covering all Penn State athletics, with over 3.5 million readers in 2023. Matt is also a credentialed member of the Penn State football beat, and is a member of the Football Writers Association of America.


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