Dienhart: What's next for PSU's Tom Bradley?

Tom Bradley sits and waits. It’s all he can do at this point. The former Penn State defensive coordinator told me last night that he doesn’t have any coaching jobs in the works despite several schools across the nation being in the market for defensive coordinators. In fact, three Big Ten schools need defensive coordinators: Iowa, Illinois and Purdue. If nothing transpires, the affable Bradley told me that he may explore opportunities in broadcasting. Still, he would offer a lot to any staff that hired him.

Bradley widely has been considered one of the nation’s top defensive minds, consistently building some of the nation’s finest defenses since taking over the Nittany Lion unit in 2000. Prior to that, Bradley was a defensive assistant from 1980-99 at Penn State, where he played defensive back from 1977-78.

Bradley’s defense ranked 20th in the nation this year (323.9 ypg) and was No. 1 in the Big Ten and No. 5 in the nation in scoring (16.8 ppg).
Bradley served as interim head coach for Penn State’s final four games of 2011 after Joe Paterno was fired, shepherding the school through a rough time en route to posting a 1-3 mark that ended with a loss to Houston in the TicketCity Bowl.

Despite having an interest in becoming the full-time head coach and having the support of many former players, Bradley didn’t get the appointment. Instead, Penn State hired New England Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien to assume command of a program that must navigate through an on-going child sex abuse scandal that has rocked the school and nation.

Tom Dienhart is a senior writer for BTN.com. Find all of his work at www.btn.com/tomdienhart, follow Dienhart on Twitter at @BTNTomDienhart, send a question to his weekly mailbag here, and click here to subscribe to his RSS feed.


Your Opinion?
Show Comments (6 Comments)
Tim on 1/12/2012 @ 11:07am EDT Said:

I for one would LOVE to have him @ ILLINOIS….Beckman if you are reading this call him up!!!!!

james on 1/12/2012 @ 3:47pm EDT Said:

yes, i also think he’s an excellent fit at illini.

aroznowski on 1/12/2012 @ 3:55pm EDT Said:

Tom Bradley would be a great addition to BTN. He could be the coach in the booth with Eric Collins and Chris Martin or with Tom Hart and Derek Rackley. Please make the hire, BTN!

Barry M on 1/12/2012 @ 5:20pm EDT Said:

Bradley is certainly not head coaching material. The Lions went 1-3 under him and he tried to lose to Ohio State. What idiot would not kick a chip-shot field goal up by 6? The dummy.

Barry M on 1/12/2012 @ 5:23pm EDT Said:

Bradley has applied for every head coaching job in America the past 5 years & no one would take him. Of course, our new head coach has no idea about how to recruit. He will likely be a disaster. NO head coaching experience? Are you kidding me?

Joe Pa was 8-1 until the Board over-reacted in firing him. Then the Lions became pussy-cats and rolled over like sissies. Their roar became a meow.

    Tom Dienhart, BTN.com Senior Writer on 1/13/2012 @ 11:23am EDT Said:

    Well, Bradley is a pretty good DC. I think he’ll land somewhere. He would be a heck of an asset. As for O’Brien’s lack of head coaching experience, that isn’t always a requirement for success. Just ask Bret Bielema or Pat Fitzgerald.