Aaron Murray Rips Unhinged Fans Who Threaten College Athletes

Penn State quarterback Sean Clifford received death threats after the Nittany Lions’ loss at Minnesota

Taz and the Moose
November 20, 2019 - 9:34 am
Sean Clifford Penn State

USA Today Images


Penn State quarterback Sean Clifford has been more than solid in his first year as a college starter. He has completed nearly 60 percent of his passes for 2,450 yards and has 27 touchdowns (22 pass, five rush) to just six interceptions. He’s also guided the No. 8 Nittany Lions (9-1) to a top-10 national ranking.

Unfortunately, that’s not good enough for some Penn State fans, as Clifford apparently received death threats after losing to Minnesota on Nov. 9.

Former Georgia quarterback and current college football analyst Aaron Murray has no patience for that nonsense.

“It’s nuts,” Murray said on Taz & The Moose. “We’re talking about college kids here. Don’t tell me that these kids aren’t working their butt off to be the best player they can be. You’re going to have games where things just don’t go right. It just happens. Even in the NFL, Tom Brady doesn’t always have the best day, Aaron Rodgers doesn’t always have the best day, Patrick Mahomes doesn’t always have the best day. You’re human. You’re going to make mistakes.”

Clifford was 23-of-43 for 340 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions in a 31-26 loss at Minnesota. Penn State had a chance to win the game in the final minutes, but Clifford threw an interception on 3rd-and-24 with 1:01 to play.

After that, nasty messages poured in.

“We’re not tweeting at you and yelling at you and sending death threats,” Murray said. “I think the social media and fans nowadays have definitely (overstepped) the boundary at times thinking they can say whatever they want, they can do whatever they want. ‘Oh, I’m just kidding. I don’t mean it.’ It’s not right, man. You don’t say that. If you see him in the street, I guarantee you’re not going to say that to his face. The cowardice of using social media is disgusting to me. I would be embarrassed if I was a family member of some of these people.”

Clifford has since deleted his social media accounts. Penn State coach James Franklin called the messages “troubling” and “concerning.”

“Who are you to tweet at this person?” Murray asked. “He is working his butt off week in and week out giving it all to this university, getting the crap knocked out of him in the pocket, getting up and going out there and executing the next play, and you think you have the right to go out there and tweet or Instagram or message this guy and send him threats? Shut up, delete your account and leave the kid alone. I absolutely hate it for these kids. It’s unfortunate that these one or two percent (of fans) think they can do this.”

Clifford, a Cincinnati native, will lead Penn State into Columbus on Saturday for a showdown with No. 2 Ohio State (10-0). Kickoff is at 12 p.m. ET.