Penn State quarterback Sean Clifford is back for a sixth year of college football in 2022, and he knows there will be jokes made about his age. It is a rarity to have a quarterback back in a program for a sixth year, even as the NCAA has given every student-athlete a free year of eligibility as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic that ravaged the sports calendar in 2020. But Clifford was determined to come back for one more season at Penn State to take care of some unfinished business.
Clifford is also coming back with a second year with the same offensive coordinator, something he very much is looking forward to. Penn State welcomed offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich last season to fill the staff vacancy left by Ricky Rahne, who left to become the head coach at Old Dominion. Yurcich is a well-respected offensive coordinator but there were some hiccups with the offense last season that held Penn State back down the line.
“That’s something that some people don’t realize, is that a new offense is going to have its kinks and the hurdles you have to jump,” Clifford explained to Crissy Froyd of The Draft Network. “This is the first time as a starting quarterback at Penn State that I’ve had the same offense back-to-back years, so I’m extremely excited for this season just because of how comfortable I am right now.”
Of course, Clifford is one of college football’s most veteran passers in the game this fall, and he already has three seasons of starting experience under his belt. Clifford succeeded Trace McSorley as the starting quarterback in 2019, and he helped lead the Nittany Lions to an appearance in the Cotton Bowl, where Penn State won the highest-scoring Cotton Bowl up to that point against Memphis. But the last couple of seasons have not gone according to plan for Clifford and the Nittany Lions. But Clifford views his age and experience in a way that drives him to be better for his teammates this fall.
“I think I’m damn close to the oldest guy in college football, so I need to act that way and make sure I’m operating at a very high level getting us in the right play,” Clifford told The Draft Network. “There are no excuses to be made for me at this point, I need to make sure I’m on top of things every single play and just executing like I should.”
Clifford is also showing leadership off the field with the recent launch of his own NIL agency, Limitless NIL.
Clifford is expected to be Penn State’s starting quarterback once again in 2022. How much we see if Clifford in the spring game will be answered on Saturday when Penn State wraps spring practices with the annual Blue-White Game.
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