Oklahoma football: Former Penn State teammates now on opposite sides of OU-Texas rivalry
Sooners wide receiver Justin Brown and Longhorns kicker Anthony Fera each left Penn State in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky scandal. Now they get their first taste of the Red River Rivalry on Saturday in the Cotton Bowl.
NORMAN — Justin Brown and Anthony Fera were part of the same Penn State football recruiting class four years ago.
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Brown, a senior receiver, and Fera, a redshirt junior kicker, stayed Nittany Lion teammates until early August.
This week, though, Brown and Fera are preparing with new teammates in Oklahoma and Texas, respectively, for Saturday's Red River Rivalry game in the Cotton Bowl, where the former Nittany Lions will meet as opponents.
“He tweeted me today,” Brown said after Tuesday's practice. “Asked me if I was ready.
“That should be fun. I'm glad to see him.”
Meanwhile, in Pennsylvania, Jerry Sandusky — the felon whose child abuse shamed Penn State, brought down the late Joe Paterno and caused Brown, Fera and seven of their teammates to transfer — was sentenced to at least 30 years in prison, essentially a life term for the 68-year old former Nittany Lions assistant coach.
“It's not my place at all to comment on that,” Brown said when asked about Sandusky's sentence.
During a recent interview with The Oklahoman, Brown said he saw Sandusky around Penn State facilities a few times but never met him.
“He wasn't around that much for people to really get to know him,” Brown said. “We'd only seen him a couple of times.”
After the NCAA's harsh sanctions, which included immediate eligibility for any Penn State players who wanted to transfer, Brown chose Oklahoma. He called the transfer a “personal decision for me and my family,” and said he didn't leave Penn State to “run away from the situation.”
Still, Brown said the continuing saga was draining for players; every time they thought it was over, he said, something else came up.
“You got to a point where you thought, ‘Wow. This is never gonna end,'” Brown said. “It would die down for about a month, and then something else would come up.
“You would never think that something like that would happen at a school you go to. Or happen at all.”
Brown caught his first OU touchdown pass last week at Texas Tech; the senior has started all four of OU's games and hauled in 15 catches for 154 yards since transferring just after fall camp began.
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