PECKVILLE — Hundreds of Penn State fans descended on Lackawanna County to get a chance to rub elbows with the new head football coach of the Nittany Lions.
The annual Coaches Caravan stopped in our area Wednesday night, bringing with it coach James Franklin.
With the glitz and glamor of a Hollywood premiere, Penn State fans couldn’t be more thrilled to shake hands and snap a photo with the Nittany Lions new head football coach.
“It`s awesome, I’ve been looking forward to this for a long time, it’s great. I think he’s going to do good for us, and I can’t wait to see him on the field in the fall,” said PSU senior Bill Biko from Pittston Township.
Waiting in a line that wrapped the length of the ballroom at Fiorelli’s in Peckville, it was a chance to get up close to the man who will lead the blue and white next season.
“Very excited, my husband and I have been season ticket holders of Penn State for 35 years, so we’re very thrilled,” said Marina Pampianco of Archbald.
Franklin, along with other PSU coaches, was in northeast Pennsylvania for a stop along this year’s Coaches Caravan.
While the tour included major cities such as Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, organizers said the Lackawanna County event drew the largest turnout with more than 900 people selling out the event.
Franklin, an East Stroudsburg University graduate, said he was told to expect a big crowd.
“It was pretty clear that everybody said one of the most well attended stops we’ll have is Scranton, fearlessly loyal in this part of the state, and the fans are what makes Penn State special,” said Franklin.
Penn State’s wide receiver Eugene Lewis was among Franklin’s local players who joined the festivities.
The former high school football star from Luzerne County said he was impressed with the turn out.
“It’s one of the greatest feelings ever, just to have all these people come out and support us, and that’s why we come out to support them, too. We just want to thank all these people for coming out here,” said Lewis.