Penn State fires offensive coordinator Yurcich

Penn State fired offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich on Sunday, a day after the unit struggled in a high-profile loss for the second time this season.

Running backs coach Ja’Juan Seider and tight ends coach Ty Howle will replace Yurcich as co-offensive coordinators.

The No. 10 Nittany Lions scored only 15 points and managed just 238 yards of offense (74 through the air) in Saturday’s 24-15 loss to No. 3 Michigan. Penn State’s offense also struggled in a 20-12 loss to Ohio State on Oct. 21, finishing with 240 yards and not reaching the end zone until the game’s final minute.

Yurcich, 48, has been the team’s offensive playcaller and quarterbacks coach since 2021. He spent the 2020 season coaching quarterbacks at Ohio State, following a six-year run as Oklahoma State‘s offensive coordinator.

Penn State converted only 4 of 14 third downs against Michigan.

“We thank Mike for his contributions over the last three years but feel it is in our program’s best interest to make a change at this time. We wish him and his family nothing but the best in the future,” coach James Franklin said in a statement Sunday.

Quarterback Drew Allar, ESPN’s No. 51 overall recruit in the 2022 class, has avoided major mistakes but struggled to produce at high levels for long stretches this season. Allar has 21 touchdown passes and only one interception but averages only 6.34 yards per attempt, which ranks 115th nationally. Penn State’s lack of downfield passing has hamstrung the offense, especially against Ohio State and Michigan. Penn State ranks 88th nationally in passing offense.

Yurcich spent the early part of his career in college football’s lower divisions. Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy hired him from Division II Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania after discovering Yurcich’s offensive success through online research. Yurcich also coached quarterback Justin Fields while at Ohio State in 2020.

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