Wednesday, November 09, 2011

AP: Paterno to announce retirement (4x UPDATED)

4th UPDATE: 4:08 p.m. EST: The New York Daily News is among many news organizations reporting that the Penn State Board of Trustees is dumping university president Graham Spanier.
Penn State's trustees have reportedly given university president Graham Spanier two options: quit or be fired.

The Patriot-News of Harrisburg is reporting that the trustees have told Spanier that he must resign Wednesday, or he will be ousted at an emergency meeting scheduled for Wednesday night.
"Graham's smart. My guess is he'll negotiate his way right out this," said the trustee, who asked to remain anonymous because the board has not acted. "If I'm him and I get a sense of things going south, I say, 'Let me get out of here with my head connected to my shoulders and with grace.' He's not going to battle it out."
If Mr. Spanier does not step down before Thursday, the board will hear arguments on both sides. If the current opposition to the president remains as strong as it is now, the board member said, "it's over."
3rd UPDATE: 11:00 a.m. EST: In a perhaps overly simplified argument, you can examine the Paterno retirement in one of two ways: Either he was brought down by a man whom Paterno thought of as a friend but who could turn out to be a pervert, or Paterno was hopelessly ill-prepared to handle a crisis. And those around him failed as well.

2nd UPDATE: 10:57 a.m. EST: Here is the full text of Paterno's statement (posted by the Boston Globe):
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.
1st UPDATE: 10:53 a.m. EST: Joe Paterno has released a statement confirming that he will retire at the end of the season.



ORIGINAL POST: The Associated Press reports that Penn State head football coach Joe Paterno will announce his retirement effective at season's end.
Penn State football coach Joe Paterno has decided to retire at the end of the season, according to a person familiar with the decision.

The person said Paterno will announce his retirement later Wednesday.
The person spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity because the decision has yet to be announced.
Paterno has been besieged by criticism since former defensive coordinator and one-time heir apparent Jerry Sandusky was charged over the weekend with molesting eight young boys between 1994 and 2009. Athletic director Tim Curley and vice president Gary Schultz have been charged with failing to notify authorities after an eyewitness reported a 2002 assault.
Paterno decided to retire at age 84, in the middle of his 46th season with the Nittany Lions. He won 409 games, a record for major college football, but now, the grandfatherly coach known as "Joe Pa," who had painstakingly burnished a reputation for winning "the right way," leaves the only school he's ever coached in disgrace.
But Paterno might not be able to execute his exit strategy as the school's board of trustees is still considering its options, which could include forcing Paterno to leave immediately.
Paterno's decision -- whether it is fully his or brought on by others around him -- ends an era of college football (and sports for that matter) that will never be matched. If you caught the students' reaction to his impromptu address to them last night, then you understand that he's still loved by them.

Paterno's retirement might not be the last act associated with the recent sex scandal. The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Penn State's president, Graham Spanier, also is under intense pressure to resign (or he could be fired) and that a former Pennsylvania governor could be brought in to replace him.





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