cloudy-day Created with Sketch.
H 81° L 61°
  • cloudy-day Created with Sketch.
    Current Conditions
    Mostly Cloudy. H 81° L 61°
  • cloudy-day Created with Sketch.
    Mostly Cloudy. H 81° L 61°
  • clear-day Created with Sketch.
    Mostly Sunny. H 81° L 61°

The latest top stories

00:00 | 00:00


The latest traffic report

00:00 | 00:00


The latest forecast

00:00 | 00:00

Commentary: Paterno’s statement’s not enough, Penn State dropped ball

Jeff Schultz is a columnist and blogger for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Joe Paterno will coach at least three more football games.

This is not going to be pretty.

Paterno confirmed this morning that he will retire at the end of the season. This follows ugly sexual abuse claims against former Penn State defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky and the belief by many that school officials, including Paterno, may have been complicit in covering up the matter and/or could have done more to push for an investigation.

Paterno released a statement in which he conceded, “With the benefit of hindsight, I wish I had done more.”

They were the proper words. But they should have been spoken, not released via email, before anybody at Penn State even considered allowing him back on the sideline.

I can’t imagine any university, company or entity handling a situation worse than how Penn State has handled the past few days.

Paterno’s complete statement:

“I am absolutely devastated by the developments in this case. I grieve for the children and their families, and I pray for their comfort and relief.

“I have come to work every day for the last 61 years with one clear goal in mind: To serve the best interests of this university and the young men who have been entrusted to my care. I have the same goal today.

“That’s why I have decided to announce my retirement effective at the end of this season. At this moment the Board of Trustees should not spend a single minute discussing my status. They have far more important matters to address. I want to make this as easy for them as I possibly can. This is a tragedy. It is one of the great sorrows of my life. With the benefit of hindsight, I wish I had done more.

“My goals now are to keep my commitments to my players and staff and finish the season with dignity and determination. And then I will spend the rest of my life doing everything I can to help this University.”

I wrote the other day about how sickening this whole saga is, that potentially something so despicable could go on for so long. Paterno had met his legal obligations in the Sandusky matter but questions about whether he had met his moral obligations lingered.

I also wrote that before I jumped on the growing “Paterno Must Go” bandwagon, I wanted to hear what he had to say — live, in a room, behind a microphone, with people. Granted, Paterno was being crushed by public opinion and it seemed implausible that he could not have known — 0r done –more. But to me it all seemed a little too much too fast, given Paterno’s stature and reputation before this story broke.

I believed that Paterno needed to get behind a microphone, answer every question, show remorse and make us believe that there was no intent on his part to cover up such alleged heinous crimes for a long-time friend.

Because anybody who enabled Sandusky also belongs behind bars.

But Penn State already has made its decision. That’s a mistake. It’s as if the university is allowing Paterno one final power play in State College.

It’s going to be ugly in “Happy Valley” at Saturday’s final home game against Nebraska.

It’s going to be ugly and scary when Paterno and Penn State go on the road for the final two games to Ohio State and Wisconsin.

If Paterno coaches in a bowl game, the atmosphere certainly is not going to seem like a season celebration, which is what bowl games were intended to be.

Penn State dropped the ball. And when everybody looks at Paterno on the sideline Saturday, the first thought most will have won’t be, “There’s a great football coach.”

Read More

There are no comments yet. Be the first to post your thoughts. or Register.

The Latest News Headlines

  • Five people, including several juveniles, were arrested after a fight in the Orange Park Mall, the Clay County Sheriff's Office said. The fight was captured on video that has circulated on social media since Saturday. Clay County officials said about 30 juveniles were involved in the fight. A 20-year-old was arrested for resisting an officer without violence and trespassing after warning. A juvenile female was arrested for battery on a law enforcement officer and trespassing without warning, the sheriff's office reported. Three other juveniles were arrested and released to parents. They were charged with trespassing after warning and resisting an officer without violence, the sheriff's office said. The Orange Park Mall said it is working closely with law enforcement officials after the video surfaced on social media. The video, which has been shared on Facebook over 5,000 times, shows a group of girls striking a person who was lying on a couch. The fight happened in front a rue21 clothing store. A representative from the mall said the safety of shoppers, retailers and employees is its top priority. The mall is working with the Clay County Sheriff's Office while the department investigates the incident.
  • WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- The father of NFL hopeful and Florida State University star Travis Rudolph was killed this weekend in an accidental shooting, according to reports from the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office. >> Read more trending news Darryl Rudolph was shot over the weekend near Sugar Daddy’s Adult Cabaret west of the city limits in what officials have deemed an accidental shooting, the sheriff’s office said. The details of the shooting were not immediately available, but the Palm Beach County Medical Examiner’s database indicates the elder Rudolph died Saturday. Travis Rudolph’s mother confirmed Darryl’s death. Travis Rudolph, West Palm Beach native and Cardinal Newman High School graduate, made headlines last summer when he ate with a middle school student who was sitting alone. Rudolph, a wide receiver, and his Seminoles teammates were visiting the student’s Tallahassee middle school.
  • A giant 9-foot long beehive with some 50,000 bees inside was discovered under the eaves and in the attic of a guest house on a property in Tucson, Arizona. >> Read more trending news Homeowner Cindy Stewart called in bee experts to help relocate the massive hive of Africanized honey bees last week, according to KOLD-TV. Stewart said trying to handle the colony by herself seemed risky. 'They're very aggressive, and they can sting you more than once,' she told KOLD. Stewart got help from American Bee Control’s Greg Denker, who said it took at least a year for a hive to grown that big. 'This is a bee hive that has been undisturbed by people for a long time, so it's grown very large,” Denker said. The agency is relocating the Stewart’s bees to hives and bee boxes in southern Arizona.   
  • Best Buy announced Sunday that it will sell Nintendo's NES Classic for one day only on Monday. The game system has been discontinued by Nintendo, and Best Buy says it has only “limited quantities” available for sale. According to the chain, customers can buy only one NES Classic, and it is on a first come, first-served basis. There will be a ticketing system for those who are waiting in line when the stores open. There will be only as many tickets as there are games, the chain said. The NES Classic was released last year and has a retro game unit look. It sold for $60. You can find out when your local Best Buy opens by clicking here.
  • Here's a roundup of news trending across the nation and world today. What to know now: 1. Monuments removed: Workers in New Orleans began removing Confederate monuments around the city early Monday. Trucks arrived around 1:30 a.m. at the first of four monuments the city is taking down. City officials say some protesting the removal of the statues have made death threats. According to The Associated Press, workers inspecting one of the monuments before it was to be removed were wearing flak jackets and helmets. 2. Arkansas executions: Arkansas plans to execute two people on Monday night, the first double execution to take place in the United States in more than 16 years. If the executions take place, Jack Jones and Marcel Williams, both convicted of murder, would be the second and third inmates put to death in the state this month. Arkansas officials say they intend to execute eight inmates before the end of the month when one of the drugs it uses for lethal injections expires. 3. O’Reilly’s podcast: Bill O’Reilly, the ousted Fox News commentator, will resume his “No Spin News” podcast on Monday, according to an announcement on his personal website. The podcast is set for 7 p.m. and is available to premium subscribers of his website. Fox dropped O’Reilly last week after he was accused of sexual harassment by a number of women. 4. A busy week: Saturday marks President Donald Trump’s first 100 days in office, and this week could be one of the toughest for the administration. The president has promised to unveil an outline of proposed tax cuts, to work to push along a new health care bill and to manage a budget deadline that could shut down the government on Friday. Trump is also expected to sign an executive order on energy this week. 5. Moran dies: Erin Moran, who played Joanie Cunningham on the 1970’s show “Happy Days,” died over the weekend. Moran was found dead on Saturday in Corydon, Indiana. No cause of death was given, and an autopsy is planned. Moran was 56. And one more Former President Barack Obama will make his first public appearance since leaving office in January when he speaks to university students Monday in Chicago. According to a spokesman for Obama, he plans to begin a series of speeches across the United States and in Europe.  In case you missed it   

The Latest News Videos