ESPN recently compiled a list of the 40 “ascending superstar” coaches in college football under 40 years old — and Penn State offensive coordinator Ricky Rahne made the cut.
Rahne, 38, coached the quarterbacks and then the tight ends at Penn State before becoming the OC in December after Joe Moorhead left for Mississippi State. He was a record-breaking quarterback at Cornell until 2001 and got into the coaching business three years later.
Here’s what ESPN wrote about the assistant:
“The former Cornell quarterback cut his teeth under Bill Snyder at Kansas State and has a diverse position profile, working with running backs, tight ends and quarterbacks. He recruited current PSU quarterback Trace McSorley and has the schematic and leadership skills to keep a record-setting Lions offense rolling in 2018.”
Former Penn State receivers coach Josh Gattis, who is now with Alabama, also made the list. Several other current Penn State coaches didn’t make an appearance because they didn’t meet the “under 40” requirement.
Defensive line coach Sean Spencer is 47 years old, defensive coordinator Brent Pry is 48 years old.
Overall, eight Big Ten coaches made the cut. The others included Ohio State’s Ryan Day (39, acting head coach), Ohio State’s Alex Grinch (38, co-defensive coordinator/safeties), Wisconsin’s Jim Leonhard (35, defensive coordinator/defensive backs), Nebraska’s Greg Austin (34, offensive line), Michigan’s Aaron Bills (39, director of fooball creative), Northwestern’s Cody Cejda (32, director of football operations and strategy) and Michigan’s Ben Herbert (38, director of strength and conditioning).
Rahne started as a defensive line coach at Holy Cross in 2004 before becoming Cornell’s running backs coach in 2005. From there, he first went to Kansas State as a graduate assistant before becoming a running backs coach and tight ends coach (2006-2010) and then arrived in Vanderbilt (2011-2013) as a quarterbacks coach. He followed James Franklin to Penn State in 2014.