Thursday, November 10, 2011

The war of words at Penn State now begins (3x UPDATED)

3rd UPDATE: 12:33 a.m. EST: Let's draw a hard and clear line on what is happening on a few State College streets in these early hours of Thursday. You and I and anyone else who wants to speak out for or against the dismissal of Joe Paterno have the right to do so. However, when that right to protest goes too far and leads to rock throwing, wanton destruction or blatant disregard for law enforcement, then those people need to be called out.

2nd UPDATE: 12:28 a.m. EST: Kudos to ESPN and the SportsCenter crew. I am typically disgusted by ESPN's over-the-top attitude about sports and the people associated with it. But I have watched the SportsCenter program for perhaps two hours now, and ESPN's anchors and reporters are doing as credible a job as any news network would be.

1st UPDATE: 12:22 a.m. EST: Multiple media reports indicate that the situation on the streets around the Penn State campus is getting testy. The Penn State student newspaper, The Daily Collegian, is providing multiple tweets indicating that a television-news van has been overturned and that mace has been used on at least on person.

ORIGINAL POST: CBS News reports that there is a difference of opinion regarding how Joe Paterno learned on Wednesday night that he had been fired.
A source close to former Penn State Football Coach Joe Paterno tells CBS News chief investigative correspondent Armen Keteyian that the Paterno family is shocked and outraged over the university's handling of the firing.
The source claims John Surma, the vice chair of the school's board of trustees, lied at the press conference announcing Paterno's firing when he said the board had informed Paterno by phone about its decision to terminate the head coach after 46 seasons.
Instead, the source claims a university employee hand-delivered a letter about the firing to the family home a mere 15 minutes prior to the press conference. According to the source, the reason for the letter was that the university employee said the board was unable to locate Paterno during the day.
The legendary football coach is said to be in seclusion, the source claims, and Paterno allegedly said upon hearing the news: "You give your life to this place and that's how you're treated."
And WPVI provides the full text of Paterno's late-Wednesday statement in which he admitted his disappointment at being fired.
"I am disappointed with the Board of Trustees' decision, but I have to accept it.
A tragedy occurred, and we all have to have patience to let the legal process proceed. I appreciate the outpouring of support but want to emphasize that everyone should remain calm and please respect the university, its property and all that we value. 
I have been incredibly blessed to spend my entire career working with people I love. I am grateful beyond words to all of the coaches, players and staff who have been a part of this program. And to all of our fans and supporters, my family and I will be forever in your debt." 

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