Oct 19, 2019; University Park, PA, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions linebacker Micah Parsons (11) reacts to a defensive play against the Michigan Wolverines during the second quarter at Beaver Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

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All-American Parsons not returning to Penn State

All-American linebacker Micah Parsons will not be returning to Penn State.

Coach James Franklin confirmed Wednesday that Parsons, who opted out of the season amid the coronavirus pandemic, will remain out.

“That won’t be happening,” Franklin said of a prospective return.

Franklin said on Sept. 19, after the Big Ten announced football would be played this fall after all, that he and Parsons were discussing the situation.

“We’re still having conversations with Micah. He’s been great. I think he’s excited about the opportunity,” Franklin said.

Parsons, projected as a top-10 pick in the 2021 draft, announced on social media on Aug. 6 that he didn’t want to risk contracting the coronavirus and spreading it to his 2-year-old son, Malcolm. That consideration, he said, “far outweighed my urge to play football” this season.

“There’s healthy dialogue going on,” Franklin said earlier this month. “At the end of the day if it’s right for Micah and his family, then we want to show them the path to get it done here at Penn State.”

Parsons signed with an agent and would have had to take steps to have his eligibility restored should he return for his junior season.

In two seasons with the Nittany Lions, he played in 26 games and recorded 192 tackles, including 19 for loss, to go along with 6.5 sacks and six forced fumbles.

Four other potential first-round picks — CB Shaun Wade and OL Wyatt Davis of Ohio State, OL Jalen Mayfield of Michigan and WR Rashod Bateman of Minnesota – opted back in after the Big Ten announcement. Only Bateman is still waiting for an NCAA waiver that will allow him to play, though he has received a waiver to practice.

–Field Level Media

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