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“I am who I am, I’m not going to change,” Bradley said. “I’m not going to pretend I’m somebody else.”

Bradley grew up in Johnstown, a western Pennsylvania mining town, as the second oldest of seven kids (three boys and four girls). His father, Jim, played basketball for Pittsburgh but, like many Irish Catholics, the Bradleys’ football allegiances were to Notre Dame. The Penn State connection started with his older brother, Jim, who played defensive back for Paterno from 1973-74.

Tom played defensive back from `77-78, and his younger brother, Matt, was a linebacker from `79-81.

“If anybody’s groomed for the job, it’s him,” said former Penn State defensive end Aaron Maybin, now with the New York Jets. “He’s been around there about as long as just about any of the other coaches. He’s going to be as familiar with the staff as anybody else that they would be able to find in such short notice to handle the job the rest of the year. I’m sure he has the team’s support and everything.”

Bradley acknowledged the magnitude of the job ahead of him, saying he had not slept. Asked when he might, Bradley flashed one of the few smiles of the morning.

“Do I look that bad?” he said.


Ralph D. Russo reported from New York. AP Sports Writer Dennis Waszak Jr. contributed from Florham Park, N.J.