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Lions’ 2021 schedule set; Howle hired as TE coach

Penn State football

UNIVERSITY PARK — The Big Ten announced changes to its 2021 football schedule on Friday.

Penn State’s open date will now be Oct. 16. It previously had been slated for Oct. 2.

The changes were made to adjust sites that were necessitated by the coronavirus changes in 2020.

The Nittany Lions open Sept. 4 at Wisconsin and then will play four straight home games — Ball State (Sept. 11), Auburn (Sept. 18), Villanova (Sept. 25) and Indiana (Oct. 2).

Illinois (Oct. 23), Michigan (Nov. 13) and Rutgers (Nov. 20) round out the home schedule.

PSU’s other Big Ten road games are Iowa (Oct. 9), Ohio State (Oct. 30), Maryland (Oct. 6) and the season finale at Michigan State (Nov. 27).

In addition to the scheduling change, Penn State has hired Ty Howle as its tight ends coach.

“We are excited to have Ty represent his alma mater and serve as our tight ends coach,” James Franklin said. “I have known Ty since I first started at Penn State when he worked with our recruiting department. Since then, I followed his career and watched him grow into an impressive coach and tremendous leader of young men.”

Howle replaces Tyler Bowen, who left to become the tight ends coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars.

“I am excited and honored to be the tight ends coach at my alma mater,” Howle said. “I want to thank Coach Franklin for giving me this opportunity to develop the tremendous young men in this program. Penn State University means the world to my family and me. I’m thankful for everyone who helped me get to this point and I’m excited to be home at Penn State.”

Howle was a two-year starter at Penn State and a four-year letterwinner on the offensive line from 2009-13.

Prior to his return to Happy Valley, Howle spent four seasons at Western Illinois and was an offensive analyst for Penn State in 2020.

Howle spent the 2014 and 2015 seasons at North Carolina State as a graduate assistant with the offensive line, working with current Pittsburgh Steelers offensive coordinator Matt Canada.

Franklin also announced that Terry Smith has been promoted to associate head coach and receivers coach Taylor Stubblefield was named offensive recruiting coordinator.

In other Penn State-related news, quarterback Will Levis, who entered the transfer portal last month, confirmed on Twitter that he’s committing to Kentucky.

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