R.I.P., Joe Paterno

By 11W Staff on January 21, 2012 at 9:00p

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Is it Saturday Yet's picture

Huff Post saying he's still alive?

Colin's picture

A lot of reports of that now. Apparently family spokesman said that the death report was untrue... I guess we'll see now.

LABuckeye's picture

Local news in Los Angeles reporting he is dead

faux_maestro's picture

The family spokesperson says he's still alive.

Your mom told me she wants a Dicken Cidar.

LABuckeye's picture

I should have been clearer... local news in Los Angeles (CBS) reported as fact that he is dead, but did say that the spokesman is denying it. I guess the moral of the story is that if CBS says you are dead, then you are dead.

741's picture

I'm enjoying watching the Twitterati trip over each other's dicks trying to be first to report the death, then trying to find someone else to blame for the mistake. Good times.

LABuckeye's picture

I was with my grandmother in the last two weeks of her life as she died of cancer this past February. Something I will never forget. There are stages that are gone through when someone is terminally ill. I didn't know that until I witnessed it... we read about it in literature provided by the hospice then watched as it happened. Of course, I know nothing other than the reports about Joe Pa's situation, but it sounds like it could be that he is dying and that he is in the last stages where it WILL happen, it just hasn't become reality yet. While it is important to be by your loved one's side while this happens, it is very difficult to witness.

Orlando Buckeye's picture

Goodnight, sweet prince.

OurHonorDefend09's picture

^ This.


I feel bad for everyone that has cancer and I would NEVER wish death or sickness upon anyone, but am I the only one that doesn't really see this guy as a hero or role model like everyone seems to think?


I know he has all the wins blah blah blah, but just seems like a crook to me after all that happened. Either way, still sad to see someone go like this. 

Don't give up... Don't ever give up.

onetwentyeight's picture

Sad when any human has to go ... 


But if you ask me it was sadder he didn't do anything about those kids being raped. 


I don't feel like the good he did in the other 99.9% of his life can even be weighed against the extreme EVIL of allowing an act so heinous to occur.

I bet those of you with kids or much younger siblings would probably understand. 

Colin's picture

So the editor of Onward State just issued an apology note and stepped down... I wonder what evidence they went off of.


Ethan's picture

I'm curious to know that too. Regardless, the editor gave a great example of how to be a big boy. It can be tough to make the right decision, but that doesn't mean it shouldn't be made. Good for him

DefendOhio's picture

Ramzy's twitter sums up my feelings on all of this. 

jmoody's picture

Yahoo is confirming his death this morning.

"Did you push yourself to be great today? If you didn't do it you lost a day. We ain't got many days to lose. We're going to push your a$$ like its never been pushed because what you've got in you were going to find out" UFM

Nappy's picture

RIP, Joe.  

I never saw a football player make a tackle with a smile on his face

Texas Buckeye's picture

RIP Joe Paterno. Even after these last few months, you left a mark on college football that will never be forgotten. My condolences go out to the Paterno family.

It's true... We really are a bunch of nuts!
Go Bucks!

thedecline19's picture

It's sad when anyone dies, but we can break JoePa's legacy down to two things:

A. Legendary Football coach.
B. Willful participant in child rape coverup.

I gotta say, option B kinda makes me disregard everything in option A.

In an effort to honor him people will downplay fact B this week. Just remember, that's like saying Jeffrey Dahmer wasn't all bad because he recycled.

cplunk's picture

Prayers to his family and loved ones. It hurts to lose someone you love and my heart goes out to them.

That being said, there is no way to overestimate the pain and destruction to the lives of children that occurred because JoePa failed in the biggest moment of his life. No football accomplishment can ever make-up for that.

My prayers are for his family and friends, as well as for the victims of the child molestation that would never have suffered if the one man that everybody in town would have listened to had just done more. I have no prayers for Joe, and no RIP.

Is it Saturday Yet's picture

The ignorant comments from our fanbase are embarrassing.

JasonBuck's picture

Agree with you 110%....all buckeyes but I now know why some of us have great lifes and why others don't ....attitude and how we treat other human beings factor a lot into our success as people...and realizing we all make mistakes and how our greatest assets as humans is forgiving each other...sad that so many ignorant comments are on this site....wish there was a moderator too delete idiots...but we have too forgive them or we'll be just like them...

Dean's picture

[deleted by author after further consideration]

Bucksfan's picture

Boy, you said it Saturday.  A great man has died.  And a lot of people here think they have some sort of moral authority to judge him.  He was part of a completely different generation - one where lude acts and sexual topics simply were never discussed.  As silly as it may sound, in my eyes he was just naive, plain and simple.  It's why he shouldn't have been coaching beyond 1980 probably.  But what's done is done.

He's dead, and it's sad.  Pissing on his grave has no place here.

BrewstersMillions's picture

Oh well that makes it ok! It was the generation he was part of. Thank you for clearing this up for me. His legacy in my eyes has been restored!


Run_Fido_Run's picture

That's not the point. Most thankfully, we have at least partly learned from the past, progressing beyond a time when such matters tended to burried in family/institutional closets. Those tragic silences were a shameful part of our culture(s), but if we are to condemn all of our grandparents for being so blind, cowardly when confronted with the such evils, often committed by their own family members and friends, the list of the condemned would be very, very long indeed.

And, unfortunately, "progress" is often a matter of taking two steps forward, one step back (at best, sometimes it's one step forward, two steps back): nowadays we tend make all sorts of sociological excuses for scumbags like Sandusky - heaven forbid that we'd execute a piece of trash like him, that would be cruel and unusual punishment. Instead, our entitlement culture, in which personal responsibility is a dying value, promotes spreading the blame around.

IMO, the excessive sactimony directed at people like Paterno is part of a pattern in which our culture promotes moral avoidance & indulgence toward the actual responsible parties, and thus the moral anger must be redicted and diffused, etc.          

onetwentyeight's picture

Nobody is making excuses for Sandusky. In fact, the reason for what you see as "excessive santimony" directed at Paterno is exactly because people ARE making excuses for HIM. Sandusky being evil is something that's beyond debate. Direct me to one article or blog post in the past few months where someone tried to apologize for or explain away what Sandusky did. 

The reason you see all these people (like myself) "trashing" JoePa is because of all the people who are trying to somehow deflect HIS share of blame by pointing to his record in graduating kids, helping a school, blah blah blah. I'm sorry if SOME OF US think that "willfully ignoring child rape" is not a moral thing to do and can't even be "balanced" against things like charity work, graduation rates, football wins, ETC. It's not even on the same level. If JoePa covered up a drug scandal amongst his players, or if he knew guys were getting paid and didnt do anything about it, etc ... then you can get into the discussion about balancing his "good" works with these "bad" ones. But this is not even open for discussion. How lacking in perspective are we if we think that "Not caring about child rape" can somehow be balanced with "was a good college football coach"? 

You talk about moral avoidance in our culture, well I think ^ (this attitude towards JoePa) is what is really avoiding uncomfortable facts. We already have this image in our heads of Joe as some awesome CFB DEITY and GREAT MAN, and the Cognitive dissonance of his involvment in the Sandusky thing makes us try to grasp for some way to rationalize what we thought we knew of Joe with the despicable, cowardly actions he took. 


[ EDIT: sorry if I sound angry, it ain't personal, but yeah this is what I believe about JoePa, take it fwiw ]

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Good points, well stated, but that's just it . . . yes, people concluded very quickly (and very appropriately) that Sandusky is an evil p.o.s.; in other words, they spent about eight seconds talking about Sandusky heinous acts and nine weeks talking about Paterno's tragic inaction concerning Sandusky's dispicable crimes.   

onetwentyeight's picture

I get what you're saying. I guess it's because it's harder to understand why an otherwise good man would ignore such a thing. Nobody really "understands" Sandusky either I guess but I think most people realize that there are evil people in this world and that they do unspeakable, evil things. When Kim Jong Il passed, nobody was bothered that we all instantly concluded he was an evil POS ... b/c he WAS. 

Sandusky is the same way. He wasn't an otherwise good man who accidentally raped a child once. His crime is one that only monsters would even think about. So yes ... it is easier to stop thinking about it I suppose, because its so readily apparent that he's just evil human garbage that doesn't deserve to live in society. 

It's harder to reconcile what Joe did because of the 50+ yrs of positive press/good works he accumulated. I dont think these should even be considered when you look at the HARM that he failed to stop. But I think for some people, thinking like this ^, as I do, becomes too uncomfortable to them b/c they wanna cling to the "good" Joe that they've always known. Why else do you see the hilarious, deluded garbage people write on BSD? 

buckeyedude's picture

Great post Fido.




Bucksfan's picture

Brewster, if you want to go around for the rest of your life and not try to understand anything, and then criticize those who do, you're going to be in for a lot of moments of DERP on your part.

Quit embarrassing yourself.

cplunk's picture

"All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing"

-Edmund Burke

Luke's picture

While honesty and respect aren't mutually exclusive, I'd point out that it's equal parts insulting to go to extreme lengths to shit on the man's grave (particularly within hours of his passing) as it is to exalt him as more than a man for longevity in a career that seldom provides it. I don't think there's any debating Paterno, even if but tangentially, enabled the indellible destruction of innocence in an unforgivable number of young people, but that doesn't meant that can't coalesce with the very tangible thousands of young peoples who's lives he positively touched directly (through mentoring and personal growth development) and indirectly (through literally millions of dollars in personal investments in academic furthering efforts and childhood cancer research). Virtues don't excuse sins; they cohabit with them.

Jdadams01's picture

This. RIP JoePa. What a big life he had, in all ways. I thank him for the good he brought into this world, and there was a lot.

BuckNKY's picture

Very well stated Luke. I believe there should be room in the JoePa story for both the good and bad - if for any reason to show that a person in any position of power has a higher obligation than the letter of the law and the consequences of ignoring that obligation.

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Luke, your perspective on honesty and respect, IMO, would be an outstanding prism through which to reflect on the life of Joe Paterno, were you to write a book on the subject some months or years from now:   

I don't think there's any debating Paterno, even if but tangentially, enabled the indellible destruction of innocence in an unforgivable number of young people, but that doesn't meant that can't coalesce with the very tangible thousands of young peoples who's lives he positively touched directly (through mentoring and personal growth development) and indirectly (through literally millions of dollars in personal investments in academic furthering efforts and childhood cancer research). Virtues don't excuse sins; they cohabit with them.

But, right now, a few hours after Paterno died, I don't feel that epitaphs are the appropriate venue for trying to stike that balance - not for someone like Paterno, who did so much good, on balance. It's just not the appropriate time, place for such material, IMO. 

Luke's picture

That's the really challenging part. Whether hero or villain, the truth is probably somewhere closer to the middle. A wife lost a husband, kids their father, grandkids a grandparent, and an entire community a patriarch. Alas, it's still not black and white as to what constitutes the appropriate reaction and what is even merited to begin with. Paterno was a complicated man in life and he remains as such in death.

OurHonorDefend09's picture

Honestly, I'm surprised he lasted this long. When I watched the BTN's media day interviews this year he seemed really out of it and just plain old. Add the cancer on top of that and the writing was on the wall. I never really cared for the worship of him by Penn State fans before the scandal or especially after it. However, I have grandparents around his age and have watched loved ones die of cancer young and old so I know the grief that his family is going through right now. It is an awful thing and my prayers go out to not only his family and friends, but anyone else's going through this same situation right now.

Don't give up... Don't ever give up.

onetwentyeight's picture

All this talk about "balance" pisses me off. We aren't talking about a great college football coach who (paid his players, let them get free strippers, yachts, or say TATS, etc). We're talking about a guy who didn't give a F*CK about children being raped under his watch by one of his underlings (and make no mistake, State College belonged to JoePa. He could've told everyone there to jump off a cliff and they would've fought each other to be the first to do so). 

I'd like to see any of you try to rationalize or "balance" what he did if it was YOUR loved one being anally raped as a child while JoePa knew and didn't care enough to even make a phone call on a weekend. 

Would you still be able to tout his charity or how many # of players he graduated, etc etc ? 


Is he the real monster here? No. Sandusky is. But that doesn't mean JoePa didn't willfuly ignore the child rapist prowling his program and put the interests of "football" over "Lives of innocent kids". If he was a middle manager at Wal-Mart he'd probably be in jail. But nooo, I guess 6 undefeated seasons and 2 NCs is the price in our society where you can not give two sh*ts about kid rape and still be judged as "someone who did a lotta good". 


(And if I get banned for ^ this, then so be it. Cannot stand any more of people falling over backwards to try and salvage/ defend his "legacy".)

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Obviously, I don't agree with you (see above), but you state the argument (the other side) very well, I must say.

JakeBuckeye's picture

Tons of people die from cancer each day. Most of them never helped cover up and elongate child rape. I don't see why the masses should mourn about this. God be with Joe and the Paterno family.

cal3713's picture

It's crazy how quick it all went down.  One second we're hearing that he has no current plans to retire, the next he's embroiled in a child-molestation scandal, gets fired, gets cancer, and dies.  What's it been a month and a half? Jesus...

DefendOhio's picture

Think about if this was one of your kids that this happened to? Would you be praising Joe Pa and wishing him well? I'm not saying anything about celebrating the man's death, but i just don't believe we should save our breath for him. Life goes on.............

JakeBuckeye's picture

Exactly. Its not like death is an unusual punishment. It catches everyone.