James Franklin is Now the Longest-Tenured Coach in the Big Ten East

By Nick Polak on February 4, 2020 at 4:12 pm
Dec 28, 2019; Arlington, Texas, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions head coach James Franklin walks on the field after the game against the Memphis Tigers at AT&T Stadium.
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

With the recent news that Mark Dantonio is retiring, James Franklin is now officially the longest-tenured coach in the Big Ten East. He is also the third-longest tenured in the conference at large, behind Kirk Ferentz who got to Iowa in 1879 1999 and Pat Fitzgerald who became the Northwestern head coach in 2006. Franklin first arrived at Penn State ahead of the 2014 season.

He is followed closely by Michigan's Jim Harbaugh and Wisconsin's Paul Chryst, who both began in their current roles ahead of the 2015 season.

Franklin's longevity in Happy Valley doesn't guarantee anything for the program going forward, but it does reaffirm the decision to bring him on-board in the first place. After rocky 2014 and 2015 seasons, he's led his team to 42 wins in four seasons, two New Year's Six bowl wins, and a Big Ten Championship. He has more than proven that he is the right man to lead this program as they attempt to make the leap into Playoff contender status.

Big Ten Coaches (2014-Present)
Team Coaches Since 2014
ILLINOIS Tim Beckman (2012-2014)
Bill Cubit (2015)
Lovie Smith (2016-Present)
INDIANA Kevin Wilson (2011-2016)
Tom Allen (2016-Present)
IOWA Kirk Ferentz (1999- Present)
MARYLAND Randy Edsall (2011-2015)
DJ Durkin (2016-2018)
Mike Locksley (2019-Present)
MICHIGAN Brady Hoke (2011-2014)
Jim Harbaugh (2015-Present)
MICHIGAN STATE Mark Dantonio (2006-2019)
Vacant (Present)
MINNESOTA Jerry Kill (2011-2015)
Tracy Claeys (2016)
PJ Fleck (2017-Present)
NEBRASKA Bo Pelini (2008-2014)
Mike Riley (2015-2017)
Scott Frost (2018-Present)
NORTHWESTERN Pat Fitzgerald (2006-Present)
OHIO STATE Urban Meyer (2012-2018)
Ryan Day (2019-Present)
PENN STATE James Franklin (2014-Present)
PURDUE Darrell Hazell (2013-2016)
Jeff Brohm (2017-Present)
RUTGERS Kyle Flood (2012-2015)
Chris Ash (2016-2019)
Greg Schiano (Present)
Wisconsin Gary Anderson (2013-2014)
Paul Chryst (2015-Present)
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