For the first time since the early signing period started, Youngstown State football coach Bo Pelini met with the local media to talk about his recruits.

The Penguins signed 23 players, including Girard offensive lineman Haeden Gump.  In all seven offensive linemen signed with the Penguins.

News and Notes from Pelini.

On Gump: "Haeden's a kid that was a no brainer. I think he has a chance to be a really good football player. Big, physical; probably more of an inside guy, probably a guard for us. I think he's talented, tough, and we're excited about Haden."

CARL IN CHARGE: "Carl headed up the recruiting when he came back. He's organized and was the right guy.  I leaned on him and spearheaded it with the staff. We set a vision together, and he followed through."

BACK TO BACK CLASSES: "We're talking about two classes in a row, that are going to a lay a foundation for this program going forward. I have not had that luxury."

PLAYERS NOT RETURNING:  "Couple kids not coming back. It was time. I told you there we're going to be some changes. There are different circumstances with each kid."

ON JUSTUS REED RETURNING: "Justus is back. He's coming back. That's the best recruit I've had in a long time. He had a chance to enter the NFL draft, weighed all his options, and made a decision to come back."

ON STAFF RETURNING: "We'll see. I really haven't had time to deal with that. We'll deal with that in February."

ON INDIANS TRADING COREY KLUBER: "Kluber's gone. I really don't understand that one, and what they got for him."

ON PASSING OF FORMER IOWA COACH HAYDEN FRY: "I got recruited by Coach Fry. I played against him when I was at Ohio State. I worked for him as a graduate assistant, and as a good as a football coach as he was, he was a better man."

ON CHRISTMAS WISH: "I want to win a National Championship. That's where our focus is. I don't think we're far off."