Joyner hopes to give the next coach at least a few weeks to recruit before high school seniors can officially announce their college choices starting Feb. 1. As they await their fates, the current coaches plan to recruit until they're told otherwise.
"I don't know if it's the end of an era for Penn state football, but it feels like it's a change," Johnson said. "We know that a change is finally going to come, and that's tough to say — that a change is finally going to get here."
Players have said they have grown closer amid the media scrutiny on a scandal in which athletes had no connections.
A positive for the next coaching regime is that it appears Penn State's top juniors and sophomores plan to return. Sophomore Silas Redd, who ran for more than 1,200 yards and seven touchdowns in his first year as the featured tailback, has said he pondered his future with his family and coaches in the week after charges were initially filed before settling on staying committed to Penn State by the Nebraska game Nov. 12.
"It would be silly of me to up and leave and sit out a year," Redd said Saturday, "and I wasn't willing to do that."
Leading tackler Gerald Hodges, who emerged as a speedy playmaker in his first year as a full-time starter at linebacker, has submitted his name to an NFL draft advisory board, but plans to return. Hodges said he wanted an evaluation for precautionary reasons, but cemented his plans after talking to his parents during Christmas break.
"Not a chance at all," the junior said when asked if he would leave. "I have a semester-and-a-half left to graduate. I'm not in any rush."