Franklin offered no further explanation, but this would not appear to be a new development, as Beh has not played in a game this season for the Lions (4-2), who have a bye this week before facing second-ranked Ohio State in Beaver Stadium on Oct. 22.
A Penn State spokesperson said she did not know when Beh was barred, but noted that he was on the travel roster for games at Pitt and Michigan, and did not play.
Franklin did not indicate how long Beh’s suspension might be, other than to say that he does not figure in the offensive line picture “at this time.”
That picture became cloudier when Andrew Nelson, the starting right tackle and perhaps the Nittany Lions’ best offensive lineman, was lost for the season with a right leg injury sustained in the second quarter of last Saturday’s 38-14 victory over Maryland.
After Nelson was carted off, Brendan Mahon moved from the left side to the right, and Paris Palmer came off the bench to fill Mahon’s spot. When asked Tuesday if he had given any more thought to how the Lions might line up against the Buckeyes, Franklin mentioned those two players, as well as redshirt sophomore Chasz Wright and redshirting freshman Will Fries.
“We’re going to work through that this week,” Franklin said. “We have some different combinations there. … We’re really kind of on the entry level. Palmer actually went in and played pretty well. Chasz is a guy that’s starting to show some things that we’re excited about. Will Fries is a young player; we’re excited about his future.”
The 6-foot-6, 300-pound Beh played in all 13 games last season off the bench.
Franklin also hopes to get some guys healthy this week. Penn State has lost seven linebackers to injury so far, two of them (Nyeem Wartman-White and Jan Johnson) for the season. Franklin said last Tuesday that he had hoped to have middle linebacker Jason Cabinda for the game against the Terrapins, but Cabinda had a “setback.”
Cabinda has not played since the season opener against Kent State. He has an undisclosed injury, but has been seen with a cast on his left hand.
Outside linebacker Brandon Bell has not played since the Week Two loss at Pitt. He had been seen on crutches earlier in the season but was walking around the sideline normally — albeit in street clothes — for the Maryland game. Defensive backs Christian Campbell and Amani Oruwariye have also missed time recently with undisclosed injuries.
“A lot of these guys have been out for a number of weeks now, so obviously the longer they’re out, the more likely they are to come back to some point,” Franklin said.
Franklin said that practices will be revised this week, that the coaches will do “less pounding” on the players and instead focus on fundamentals and technique, as well as the development of the team’s younger players.
“It’s a little bit different,” he said. “You don’t have to go out there and feel like you don’t have enough hours in the day or minutes in practice to get them ready for the game on Saturday. It’s a sprint. When you have a game on Saturday, you are sprinting as coaches and players to get everything in, to make sure they’re ready for the game on Saturday — physically ready, mentally ready, emotionally ready and peaking at the right time.”
Beginning Sunday, it will be back to the normal game-week routine. The game against the Buckeyes (5-0) is an 8 p.m. start and will be televised by ABC.