STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — Sean Clifford will start at quarterback for No. 15 Penn State in its season opener against Idaho.
The Nittany Lions announced Clifford as the starter in a tweet on Friday.
Clifford was expected to win the starting job after longtime backup Tommy Stevens transferred to Mississippi State following spring practice.
Since Stevens' departure, Clifford had been battling freshman Will Levis for the spot.
With Stevens injured early last season, Clifford earned playing time in three of the first four games, during which he completed 5 of 5 passes for 195 yards and two touchdowns. The sophomore also played in the team's bowl game against Kentucky, and led the first-team offense throughout spring practice with Stevens again injured.
Despite his limited playing time, Clifford has already earned a place in the Penn State record books. His first career completion was a 34-yard touchdown strike, and he followed that a week later with the longest passing touchdown in school history, a 95-yarder against Kent State.
The Aug. 31 game against Idaho will be Clifford's first career start.