Joe Paterno Says in August That NCAA Has ‘Too Many Rules,’ Coaches Quickly Become Scapegoats


November 8, 2011

Joe Paterno Says in August That NCAA Has 'Too Many Rules,' Coaches Quickly Become ScapegoatsPenn State football coach Joe Paterno won't answer any tough questions this week, so if you're looking for his thoughts on whether he should keep his job amid the disgusting allegations against Jerry Sandusky, you're out of luck.

Fortunately, though, the 84-year-old Paterno addressed a similar situation back in August, and his answers help determine what he might think about his own situation now.

As it was just months after Jim Tressel resigned as Ohio State's head coach after players had received tattoos in exchange for jerseys, one reporter complimented Paterno for maintaining integrity in college football.

Paterno did not cast judgment on Tressel, the Buckeyes or any other program that found itself entrenched in scandal, but his thoughts on why so many schools found themselves in hot water was interesting.

"I blame a lot of the problems we have, without really knowing what I'm talking about, is on the fact that we have maybe too many rules," Paterno said. "And number two, the administrations are the first ones to kind of make the coach the scapegoat.

"I mean, I think that the universities have a tremendous responsibility to make sure the coach is doing it the way they want the program run," Paterno added. "And when a president of the institution says, 'We're embarrassed. We're gonna fire this guy,' or, 'Well, I can't fire that guy because he's a football coach,' that's not … you know, where are we?

"We're going through the same thing in the country. One guy's getting blamed for everything."

Paterno also expressed why he hopes to remain the head coach at Penn State as long he can.

"I want to stay in coaching, but not for a lot of the reasons you people [in the media] may think," he said. "Not because it's an ego trip on my part, or because I think … I gotta be the guy that leads the charge. No. I want to have a good, solid program. I want to be able to get up in the morning and know I've done the best I can to figure out we're doing the way it's supposed to be done. And we go from there."

Paterno's legacy is now very much in question, as four and a half decades of coaching the Nittany Lions could be forever tainted by the alleged actions of Sandusky. Paterno, though, didn't speak much to that point back in August.

"I'd love to give you an answer," he said, "with something like, 'Paterno says this about his experience at Penn State.' I try not to put myself in that kind of perspective and that's all I'm saying."

Hear directly from Paterno in the video below.

Previous Article

Joe Paterno Wouldn’t Have Answered Jerry Sandusky Questions at Weekly Conference Call, Which Gets Canceled Anyway

Next Article

Joe Frazier Never Stopped Battling in a Life Defined By No-Win Situations

Picked For You