Penn State leaves Kirk Ciarrocca and hires Mike Yurcich as new offensive coordinator
Penn State’s offense will have a new look in 2021.
Head coach James Franklin announced on Friday that the Lions had left Kirk Ciarrocca after just one season at State College to hire Mike Yurcich as the new offensive coordinator of the program.
“First of all, I would like to thank Kirk for his contribution to our program last year,” Franklin said in a released statement. “It was a tough decision, but I felt it was better if our program made a change. We wish him and his family the best in their future endeavors.
“We are delighted that Mike is joining our team. He is an impressive offensive spirit and a talented player who has set records wherever he has been as an offensive coordinator. I can’t wait to see what he can do with all the offensive weapons we have here at Penn State.
Yurcich, 45, played in the PSAC quarterback and got his first major job on FBS as an offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State, where his offenses set records from 2013 to 2018, after leading a high-quality attack at Shippensburg, where he developed 2021 Harlon Hill winner Zach Zulli. He spent 2019 at Ohio State, where he was the passing play coordinator and quarterbacks coach who helped develop Justin Fields before moving on to 2020 as Texas offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach.
The Euclid, Ohio native was seen as a candidate for the job Ciarrocca landed just over a year ago, and now the game is officially over.
“I want to thank Head Coach James Franklin, Intercollegiate Athletics Vice President Sandy Barbour and President Eric Barron for the opportunity to be the offensive coordinator for Penn State University,” Yurcich said in A press release.
“Having spent 11 years in the State of Pennsylvania as a player and coach, I understand the importance of this duty and I will represent it correctly and with humble pride.”
The news is by far the most unexpected of the offseason yet, as Ciarrocca, from Lewisberry, was only in charge of a single season affected by the pandemic. That said, the Lions often failed to click offensively and quarterback Sean Clifford struggled with turnovers for much of the nine-game roster, and Franklin turned out to be a quick trigger when it comes to changing coaching staff if deemed necessary.