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Penn State Needs a New Special Teams Coordinator

Oregon hires Joe Lorig, who calls the move his 'dream job.'

Penn State coach James Franklin is in the market for his fourth special teams coordinator. Joe Lorig, who spent three years with the Nittany Lions, accepted the same position at Oregon, calling it his "dream job."

"Growing up in the Pacific Northwest and attending college in the state, the University of Oregon has always been my dream job," Lorig said in a statement. "... Over the years, I have gotten the opportunity to work at many well-respected Universities alongside exceptional coaches, but I have always sacrificed living close to family. I'm beyond happy to say that I am coming HOME."

With Lorig's departure, Penn State will have replaced all three of his coordinators within a year. Last year Franklin hired offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich. Now, Lorig is the second coordinator Franklin has lost this season, as former defensive coordinator Brent Pry left to become head coach at Virginia Tech.

In addition, according to The Athletic's Brent Feldman, Franklin likely will be replacing longtime director of football operations Michael Hazel, who is set to become Pry's chief of staff.

Franklin has said he wants to prevent assistants from leaving for lateral hires but noted the unique circumstances regarding Lorig. He's from Edmonds, Washington, played college football at Western Oregon and began his coaching career there in 1997.

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In addition, Lorig and new Oregon coach Dan Lanning worked together twice before on staffs at Arizona State and Memphis.

"I think you guys know I've been pretty adamant in the past about these type of moves, lateral moves," Franklin said after the Outback Bowl. "But there's also some factors when it comes to where guys are from. Both Joe and his wife are from there, so that factors into this thing as well. "

Lorig was instrumental in shaping punter/kicker Jordan Stout's career at Penn State. Stout handled all the kicking duties for the Lions this season and was named the Big Ten punter of the year.

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