Ending with those 3 and Smith Vilbert would put PSU at #6 in the 247 composite team rankings.
Also Polk, Zech, and Johnson will leave with PSU degrees. So did Bates. Wade would have to sit out a year, which makes the prospect of transferring less enticing in my eyes. Chances he would 1 - compete for a starting spot/heavy playing time, 2 - graduate in spring of 2020, 3 - could leave as a grad transfer or something else and not miss out on a year of playing time are better if he stays, IMO.
He played far less than the other LBs. He was fine.
The list of national championship winning coaches goes on. That's certainly one way to frame an argument.
He's definitely not moving to DE. He might rush the QB more than a traditional 4-3 OLB, but he's staying at LB. Also, as far as starters, Cam and JJ could be displaced at some point, but no one has beaten them out yet.
Like I said, you're reading too much into it. Athletic talent at this level is a financial asset. Why should players be exploited any longer than necessary? There is no NFL minor league like baseball/hockey/soccer/basketball where players can make money and build skills. They SHOULD be selfish when they're the ones with the asset. A $1M+ contract is life-changing money and maybe the players are more loyal to their families than their university.
Don't read into it so much. These decisions were made long before the Citrus Bowl.
Hasn't proven much? He's going to have 1500 yards of offense this year. If he gets a 4th-round grade or better, there's no point in staying. RBs have limited mileage. I feel bad for players like Jonathan Thomas who will leave Wisconsin with nearly 1,000 career touches. That usage rate is criminal.
That's a problem I'd be more than willing to deal with.
Maybe, who knows.
I am all about no divisions: https://www.sbnation.com/college-football/2016/6/15/11923938/big-ten-schedule-divisions-realignment-rivalries. The guaranteed 3 annual opponents needs some work, but I prefer this model.
It does a bit. Should UCF lose, the G5 representative will come from outside the top 12, potentially adding another team to the at-large mix.