Penn State President Orders Paterno Statue Removal

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(CBS/AP) July 23, 2012 - 2:20pm -

Once-sainted coach Joe Paterno lost the respect of many for his alleged role in concealing the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse scandal.

Now he's lost his place in the record books too.

On Monday the NCAA vacated all Penn State victories from 1998-2011, which means Paterno will lose 111 wins. That means Former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden will now hold the top spot in the NCAA record book with 377 Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) wins.

Paterno, who was fired days after Sandusky was charged, will be credited with 298 wins. Vacated wins are not the same as forfeits — they don't count as losses or wins for either school.

Former Grambling State coach Eddie Robinson holds the record for Division I-AA (FCS) wins with 408.

Earlier this month Bowden was critical of Paterno after the release of a scathing report that blasted Paterno and other Penn State officials.

"We were pretty close as coaches, and everyone has such great respect for Joe," Bowden said. "Still, you must look at it as a man who made a mistake -- not a little-itty mistake, but a very serious mistake."


INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - July 23, 2012 - 2pm -

The family of Hall of Fame football coach Joe Paterno says the NCAA's sanctions defame his legacy and are a panicked response to the scandal that led to them.

The statement was released Monday by Paterno's family. It says President Rodney Erickson, acting Athletic Director David Joyner and the entire Board of Trustees failed by not seeking a full hearing before the NCAA's infractions committee.

The family also says that punishing "past, present and future" students because of former assistant Jerry Sandusky's crimes did not serve justice.

The family calls the move a "panicked response to the public's understandable revulsion" at Sandusky's sexual abuse of 10 boys over a period of 15 years.


July 23, 2012 - Noon -

The NCAA has announced its sanctions against Penn State University in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal. The penalties include a multi-million dollar fine, loss of scholarships and bowl games, and the loss of wins by former head coach, Joe Paterno.

The NCAA said their sanctions would be unprecedented, and they were. NCAA President Mark Emmert announced this morning that Penn State would be fined 60 million dollars, a four year postseason football ban, and the loss of all football wins for the program and former head coach Joe Paterno from 1998 until 2011, making Florida State's former head coach Bobby Bowden the all time winningest Division 1 football coach. Joe Paterno did hold the all time wins record with 409 before the sanctions. Coach Bobby Bowden was in second with 377. The vacation of the wins from 1998-2011 means that Joe Paterno loses 111 wins during that time, putting Paterno's new park at 298, 79 behind Bowden and dropping Paterno to 12th on the all time wins list. The famous statue of Joe Paterno was removed from outside Penn State's Beaver Stadium on Sunday. The 60 million dollar fine will be broken down into 12 million dollars a year for the next five years, with the money going toward a special endowment created to fund programs dedicated to the detection, prevention, and treatment of child abuse. Coach Bowden could not be reached for comment.

The FSU Athletics Department released a statement:

Any comment regarding wins and losses would be inappropriate at this time. We encourage the focus to be on supporting the children and families affected by Sandusky's abuse and other abuse victims in every community.

Stay with WCTV for much more on this story.


INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - July 23, 2012 - 9:30am

The NCAA has slammed Penn State with an unprecedented series of penalties, including a $60 million fine and the loss of all coach Joe Paterno's victories from 1998-2011, in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal.

Other sanctions include a four-year ban on bowl games, and the loss of 20 scholarships per year over four years.

NCAA President Mark Emmert announced the staggering sanctions Monday at a news conference in Indianapolis. Though the NCAA stopped short of imposing the "death penalty" -- shutting down the Nittany Lions' program completely -- the punishment is still crippling for a team that is trying to start over with a new coach and a new outlook.

Sandusky, a former Penn State defensive coordinator, was found guilty in June of sexually abusing young boys, sometimes on campus.



Six months to the day after his death, the iconic statue of Joe Paterno was removed from the front of Penn State's football stadium Sunday as the school prepared to hear about the severe punishment it will face in the wake of the sex abuse scandal surrounding former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky.

The punishment, to be announced Monday, is expected to be "unprecedented."

A top NCAA official has told CBS News the sanctions to be imposed by NCAA President Mark Emmert, approved by the association's executive committee and its Division I board of directors, center on their "length and cumulative impact" of the penalties.

They include probation, the loss of football scholarships, a ban from post-season bowl games, and a multi-million dollar fine.

The official said the "scope of the penalties" is so severe their overall impact will far exceed the so-called "death penalty" - a single-season suspension of the football program.

"The NCAA is going to come down with the harshest punishments. And remember, this is a school that would pride itself on being one that never had run afoul of the NCAA justice system. ... It really had to change the way people are going to view Joe Paterno's legacy."

In addition to the Paterno statue being hauled away from Beaver Stadium, the Paterno memorial was covered up.

Everything is gone: every plaque, every word, every reminder of six decades at Penn State - erased memorials to a man who, in the end, said he wished he had done more.

The sanctions could turn Penn State's football program into an also-ran for quite awhile.

NCAA hits Penn State football with $60 million fine, vacates Paterno's wins from 1998-2011.


STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- July 22, 2012

Penn State University will remove the famed statue of Joe Paterno outside its football stadium, eliminating a key piece of the iconography surrounding the once-sainted football coach accused of burying child sex abuse allegations against a retired assistant.

The university said Sunday that it will take down the larger-than-life monument in the face of an investigative report by former FBI Director Louis Freeh that found the late coach, along with three top Penn State administrators, concealed the abuse claims against Jerry Sandusky more than a decade ago in order to shield the university and its football program from negative publicity.

A spokeswoman for the Paterno family did not immediately return phone and email messages Sunday morning.

Construction vehicles and police arrived shortly after dawn Sunday, barricading the street and sidewalks near the statue, erecting a chain-link fence then concealing the statue with a blue tarp.

A live video feed posted on the website of the Centre Daily Times of State College showed workers in white hard hats draping a plastic sheet over the statue, preparing for its removal.

Penn State President Rod Erickson said he decided to have the statue removed and put into storage because it "has become a source of division and an obstacle to healing."

"I believe that, were it to remain, the statue will be a recurring wound to the multitude of individuals across the nation and beyond who have been the victims of child abuse," Erickson said in a statement released at 7 a.m. Sunday.

He said Paterno's name will remain on the campus library because it "symbolizes the substantial and lasting contributions to the academic life and educational excellence that the Paterno family has made to Penn State University."

The bronze sculpture outside Beaver Stadium has been a rallying point for students and alumni outraged over Paterno's firing four days after Sandusky's Nov. 5 arrest -- and grief-stricken over the Hall of Fame coach's Jan. 22 death at age 85.

But it turned into a target for critics after the Freeh report's stunning allegation of a cover-up by Paterno, ousted President Graham Spanier and two Penn State officials, Athletic Director Tim Curley and Vice President Gary Schultz. Their failure to report Sandusky to child-welfare authorities in 2001 allowed him to continue molesting boys, the report found.

Paterno's family, along with attorneys for Spanier, Curley and Schultz, vehemently deny any suggestion they protected a pedophile. Curley and Schultz await trial on charges of failing to report child abuse and lying to a grand jury but maintain their innocence. Spanier hasn't been charged. Sandusky was convicted last month of 45 counts of sexual abuse of 10 boys.

Some newspaper columnists and former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden have said the statue should be taken down, while a small plane pulled a banner over State College reading, "Take the statue down or we will."

But Paterno still has plenty of fans, and Penn State's decision to remove the monument won't sit well with them. One student even vowed to "chain myself to that statue" if there was an attempt to remove it.

University officials had called the issue a sensitive one in light of Paterno's enormous contributions to the school over a 61-year coaching career. The Paterno family is well-known in the community for philanthropic efforts, including the millions of dollars they've donated to the university to help build a library and fund endowments and scholarships.

The statue, nearly 7 feet tall and weighing more than 900 pounds, was built in 2001 in honor of Paterno's record-setting 324th Division 1 coaching victory and his "contributions to the university."