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Still, Penn State defenses under Bradley were typically one of the best in the Big Ten, if not the country. Bradley worked 33 seasons as an assistant coach at his alma mater, and even interviewed to become Paterno’s permanent replacement, but his future became cloudy after Penn State tabbed O'Brien on Jan. 7.

In an emotional statement released after O'Brien was formally introduced, Bradley wished Penn State’s new boss well and pledged his full support to the school.

“This is forever my home and forever my family. It is important that we come together to support our players and our university,” Bradley said. “Now is the time to demonstrate that we are _ and always will be _ Penn State.”