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Penn State quarterback Bench to transfer

The SportsXchange

Penn State sophomore quarterback Steven Bench completed 9 of 15 passes for 99 yards and one touchdown in Saturday's Blue-White spring game. Along with Tyler Ferguson, Bench was favored to get the starting nod in coach Bill O'Brien's second year at Happy Valley.

On Wednesday, Bench had been granted his release.

In a statement released by Penn State, O'Brien said he met with Bench and other players this week to discuss "where they are at related to football and academics and to discuss what they need to work on this summer.

"After meeting with Steven, he informed me he wants to play elsewhere," O'Brien said. "We want what is best for Steven. I want to thank him for his contributions to the program. We wish Steven the best in the future and will assist him in any way we can."

Based on NCAA sanctions announced in July in connection with the Jerry Sandusky scandal, Bench will be able to transfer to an FBS program and play without having to sit out a year.

"I've decided to leave Penn State and go to a school that will give me the opportunity to compete for the quarterback spot and reaching my full potential," Bench tweeted.

Bench saw limited action last year as a true freshman. In the second game of the season, Bench replaced injured starter Matt McGloin against Virginia. He completed two passes for 18 yards.

Bench's departure gives incoming freshman, Christian Hackenberg, one of the top high school quarterbacks prospects in the nation, a chance to earn playing time.
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