It’s sad that one of the great college football coaches, Joe Paterno, died this morning of cancer. He was 85:

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — Joe Paterno, the longtime Penn State coach who won more games than anyone in major college football but was fired amid a child sex abuse scandal that scarred his reputation for winning with integrity, died Sunday. He was 85.

His family released a statement Sunday morning to announce his death: “His loss leaves a void in our lives that will never be filled.”

“He died as he lived,” the statement said. “He fought hard until the end, stayed positive, thought only of others and constantly reminded everyone of how blessed his life had been. His ambitions were far reaching, but he never believed he had to leave this Happy Valley to achieve them. He was a man devoted to his family, his university, his players and his community.”

It’s true that the last months of his life were filled with scandal. Unfortunately, that’s part of Joe Pa’s legacy. Still, it’d be wrong to not balance that lapse of judgment against the students’ lives he strengthened.

For years, Joe Pa’s graduation rate far outdistanced other elite college coaches of all sports, with the exception of Coach K and John Wooden. It’d be a shame to lose sight of that.

2 Responses to “Joe Paterno, RIP”

  • LadyLogician says:

    The Paterno family is, through the Logical Husband’s Aunt and Uncle, an extension of the Logical Family. The LH’s Uncle is a retired professor of engineer at PSU and friends and neighbors with the Paterno family. We had no doubt that this scandal would literally kill JoePa.

    LL

  • eric z says:

    It is apparent now why he wanted to finish the season as head coach.

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