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'Disappointment' marks fans' reaction to O'Brien's impending departure

Updated: Wednesday, January 1 2014, 06:26 PM CST
Reported by: Kyle Rogers

HARRISBURG -- "Disappointment" is the word Penn State football fans at the Colonial Park Mall used to describe the news that Penn State head coach Bill O'Brien is on his way out.

Stadium Studio, a sports memorabilia shop at the mall, was busy with customers on New Year's Day and managers said customers were quite vocal over O'Brien's departure. 

"I feel like he walked into a bad situation and did some positive things and really took the place where it should go," said Greg Boltz. "I think he did what most people would do and chase the dream to be an NFL coach."

O'Brien reportedly reached a deal to become the coach of the Houston Texans after two years coaching Penn State's football program. As of Wednesday evening, Penn State University officials said they have not received an official word from O'Brien on his departure. However, fans in Central Pennsylvania feel he should have stayed for two more years. 

"I think he made some promises to people he recruited," said Denny Bickel. "He had a pretty good recruiting class coming."

Some fans, like Daisy Collier, said she does not feel one way or another about O'Brien, but said it seems upsetting for the Penn State community.  

"I don't have negative or positive feelings for him," Collier said. "I mean, people do what they feel they need to do."

Despite O'Brien's departure, Justin Coble of Stadium Studio believes good things will come for Penn State football.

"Penn State football is bigger than one coach, bigger than Joe Paterno," said Coble. "A lot of people didnt think it would keep going," he said, adding the team will be getting a good coach.

Fans and players of Penn State football took to social media to express their opinions, including Scott Paterno, the son of the former head coach of Penn State football. 

In a tweet posted on Tuesday night, Paterno stated: "I get why some are upset, but in the end Bill gave us two years where we were able to just enjoy the games amidst all the other crap."

Stay with CBS 21 News for continuing coverage of what's ahead for Penn State football. 'Disappointment' marks fans' reaction to O'Brien's impending departure


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